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Original post made
on Jul 14, 2014
How much money has been raised for the town center so far? This was sold to residents on a ballot measure as coming from all private donations. The city should not be spending $900,000 of taxpayer money unless an appreciable amount of funding has already been raised.
What am I missing?
In response to "Hold On's" question - The fundraising campaign will officially start in the fall, according to town officials. However, by that time they hope to already have commitments for most of the funds that are needed for the project. The fundraising will be done by an independent committee, not the town council, although members should be part of the committee. The town also has about $10 million in library funds and $2 million in other funds set aside to replace some town offices that will also go toward the project.
The $900,000 is over the life of the contract with the project manager and not something that will be paid upfront. The project manager will help to hire an architect, which will probably also happen in the fall, with the design of the civic center perhaps being completed by next February, according to town officials.
All that is well and good, but it's not how this project was sold and authorized by the voters. We voted on using private funds only. It seems like the private donations are coming last in order rather than right up front, where they should be. $900,000 of taxpayer money should not be getting spent here, either all at once, or over the life of the project. Management of the project is part of the cost of the project, no different than the bricks and construction crew.
Some of the homeowners didn't get the survey. Lisa started by saying "While abandonment remains the best policy decision given the size of the right-of-way and lack of future need by the Town," The City Manager recommended abandonment. I am guessing over 50 residents have written the city in favor of abandonment. Parker has the largest city right-a-way in all of Atherton 70 feet. Other streets that compare to Parker are 30 ft. to 40 ft. Atherton should do what is the BEST POLICY for the town.
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