I like the Salem Police Department. I don't like the City of Salem's proposed $82 million "supersized" plan for a new police facility. Likewise, I can support our armed forces and still oppose wasteful military spending.
I've made an Adobe Spark web page that lays out five good reasons to vote NO on the $82 million bond measure that will be on the November ballot. Plus, a bonus reason. Scroll down and click to see it.
Tonight I'm planning to testify during the public comment period at a City Council meeting where, almost certainly, approval of the bond measure referral will occur.
Here's what I told City officials recently in an email where I gave them advance notice that I'd be opposing the police facility bond measure:
I want to let City officials know that I (along with others) will be actively opposing the $82 million police facility bond measure that, almost certainly, will be approved by the City Council at the upcoming June 27 meeting.
This is unfortunate, because a lyric from an Adele song comes to mind: “You could have had it all.” After the ill-fated plan to build a new police facility on the Civic Center campus was dropped due to strong community opposition, Salem was close to a consensus on how to proceed:
Build a 75,000 to 106,000 square foot police facility away from the Civic Center, with surface parking, and make vital seismic upgrades to City Hall and the Library.
But the size and cost of the police facility doubled, and the seismic upgrades got squeezed out by the new supersized “full meal deal” plan. So now some of the people who have closely followed this project feel duty-bound to oppose the $82 million bond measure.
As a first step, I’ve put together a Salem Can Do Better web page — which presents five reasons to vote “No” on the bond:
Since community discussion on important issues is always good, Salem will benefit by having a vigorous debate between now and the November election about the merits of the $82 million police facility proposal. As you know, polling showed just about an even split between those who initially favored and opposed a bond for this purpose.
So I look forward to being a voice on the “No” side of the debate, recognizing that others will speak up for “Yes.” Then voters will decide the question, hopefully based on a full and accurate understanding of what it would mean for the bond measure to pass or fail.