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August 22, 2018

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Brian,

Thank you for describing and offering your perspective on apparent reluctance of the SKATS to clearly focus on environmental issues that are associated with transportation planning in the Salem/Keizer metropolitan planning organization.

Your point regarding "consensus" may well be correct for I have not carefully followed the SKATs decision making process.

But I take umbrage with your solution. It is neither the Mayor or the City Manager's responsibility to "instruct" Council Lewis. That is the responsibility of his fellow Council members. It is they as a body that set the City of Salem environmental policies that the Council charges their representative to convey to SKATS.

E.M., good point. I hadn't thought of that. I sort of figured that Jim Lewis was on his own when deciding how to vote on SKATS/MPO issues. But you're right. He must represent the City Council. If the City of Salem itself had representation, I assume a staff person would be on the group.

E. M. and Brian: The City Council has instructed Councilor Lewis what to advocate for when it comes to Goal 7 of the proposed Regional Transportation System Plan. Back in March, I believe, Councilor Andersen proposed the following language for Goal 7: " [A RTSP that is] planned to minimize the impacts to the natural and built environment, in accordance with locally adopted policies and actions including locally adopted greenhouse gas reduction policies." The Mayor sent a letter to SKATS on March 23rd about this. Now it is incumbent upon Councilor Lewis to take the new watered-down version of Goal 7 that does not mention greenhouse gases back to the Council for their concurrence. I hope the Council hangs tough and insists that Goal 7 deals directly with the need to reduce greenhouse as emissions in the transportation sector in our region.

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