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Mistakes Made & Constructive Advice
By Chris J. Herby


October 27, 2005

I would just like to say that I very much appreciated the letter from Robert Warner regarding the misuse of public funds presently occurring downtown. I absolutely agree with his comments. Every time I drive by the city float area and see a drilling barge hard at work drilling test holes for a project that voters turned down, I become very angry at our city government. This spring our city council did the right thing in moving forward with a port expansion project to put before the voters. Even though I believe they chose the wrong project, I commended them for making a decision and putting it on the ballot. Then came all of their mistakes.

Here are the mistakes in the order made. First, they awarded a 2.5 million dollar design contract to design a project that was not yet approved by the voters. Second, the council voted to spend approximately $25,000.00 of public money to convince voters to vote yes. This mistake backfired and actually helped defeat the proposition. You don't spend voters money to tell them how to vote. Third and worst mistake of all, the council ignored the vote of the people and moved forward with the design contract for the project that the voters said no to. We all try to teach our children that No means No. Why can't our council get that?

All that being said, I don't think it's fair to criticize our council without offering some constructive advice. First, stop spending money on re-vamping berth 2 because the voters said no for many good reasons. Next, put a different project together by working with all groups rather than just north enders. Then educate the public, don't try to sway them. Then go back for voter approval. Proceeding in this manner will allow us to move forward with a project that will help our all important tourism industry to thrive. I totally support our tourism industry and I believe we need to improve our port facilities to accommodate the larger ships and the large number of tourists that are so important to our local economy. That being said, please don't continue to try to cram the wrong project down our throats. I believe if the city continues to move forward with this project without voter approval, opposition will continue to grow and rightfully so.


Chris J. Herby
Ketchikan, AK - USA


Related Viewpoint:

letter Open Letter To Ketchikan City Council: Please Answer the Question By Robert D. Warner - Ketchikan, AK - USA




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