Land Swap: Let me see if I
have this right....
by Alan Bailey
September 07, 2004
Let me see if I have this right. The Borough Assembly, a governmental
entity elected by a majority vote of those who voted in Ketchikan,
agrees to support the Ketchikan Area Arts Council by a land swap
with Mr. Dawson for his land near the Federal Building for property
at the pulp mill site. Assembly persons Sarber, Tipton and Lybrand
dissenting. A majority votes in favor of an agreement through
numbers of formal assembly meetings and public input. The caveat
is that the borough must first try to put a bid out and try to
sell the pulp mill land for a minimum bid of over a million dollars.
If the property doesn't sell for that, then the trade goes into
effect with Mr. Dawson. Bidding protocol is established, published
and when the time comes, no one bids on the property.
The process goes forward with the trade and Salazar steps in
and says (In words to the effect) he's vetoing the whole thing
because the value of the land is not a fair trade. The original
dissenting borough assembly members Sarber, Tipton, Lybrand now
agree this needs to be squashed. But there is a slight problem,
Salazar's veto does not follow assembly regulations and is not
timely. So an attorney is hired to see how they can get out of
this original agreement. I wonder if any of the dissenting members
have ancestors in the treaty business?
Can someone explain to me what
a rock is worth if no one buys it? What major industry is knocking
down the doors to purchase a tax-ridden piece of property at
the pulp mill site? Any development by Mr. Dawson will result
in tax revenues. That's one thing the borough assembly is good
at. How can an elected group of officials pick or choose what
rules to follow when they don't like the outcome of a majority
You have thousands of voting
supporters for the Ketchikan Area Arts Council. Like it or not,
a governmental entity made a public agreement and is now trying
to figure out a way to break that agreement. Public hearings
were held and people had their say. Sometimes we don't like how
governmental officials vote but in this instance, this is one
issue that the majority of the community agrees. Let's have something
that defines our community beside a jewelry store.
Ketchikan, AK - USA
Note: Comments published
on Viewpoints are the opinions of the writer
Listen to this
KRBD story... When
the Ketchikan Gateway Borough Assembly meets Tuesday, it will
consider canceling all agreements pertaining to a land swap that
would benefit the proposed Ketchikan Center for the Arts. As
Deanna Garrison reports, the Assembly will also consider granting
eight acres of Borough land in Ward Cove to the Ketchikan Regional
Cold Storage Association.
KRBD - Ketchikan Public Radio
and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Sitnews.
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