Saturday, Jan 17, 1998
A quick overview of the issues.
Tip Johnson, former member of the Bellingham City Council and the driving force behind the referendum signature drive, concisely explains the main issues. This is being posted late Saturday evening, January 17 - only 4 days before the dealine for turning in petitions.
What is Hoag's Pond About?
The referendum seeks to review City Ordinance # 10910. Theordinance, and its companion resolution, strike a land deal whichcloses street access to Hoag's Pond and trades a beautiful overlookfor a thin strip of poor ground.
The trade effectively transfers city property away from the pondand prepares for the consolidation of private property around thepond. This is a bad deal for the citizens because we lose some nicecity property, the ways to it, and access to the pond.
These extreme measures seem unnecessary considering that the Cityis also discussing the possibility of buying the whole property. Inthis light, the trade gives away what's being bought while clearingthe way for a price hike. In return we get the pre-trade rate on justa thin strip of the property's margin. The trade is not onlylop-sided, it is categorically inappropriate in view of the possibleacquisition.
However, supporting the referendum dos not require accepting theseopinions. Signing the petition helps assure that everyone has theinformation and time to form their own opinion - and the opportunityto register it. This deal is done unless 1,487 valid signatures ofregistered City of Bellingham voters are delivered to the FinanceDirector on January 22nd. (See Deadline - below)
Who dreamed up this Deal?
Why who did what is always an intriguing and natural line ofinquiry. However, it's extremely unimportant to the referendumprocess. These are investigative matters that take time which willonly be available if the referendum is qualified. What is importantis filing the valid signatures of 1,487 registered City of Bellinghamvoters with the Finance Director by January 22nd. (See Deadline -below)
Petitions that are not mailed to Tip Johnson, PO Box 4307,Bellingham 98227 on or before Jan 20, can be dropped off at HarrisMusic across from the Herald Building, or call 733-9211 for pickup.Jan 22nd is the filing deadline and all petitions must be received bythe Finance Director at City Hall.
We have a printable Petition for you.
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