The astroturf (fake grass roots) Salem Bridge Solutions group is super-excited about tonight's West Salem Neighborhood Association meeting.
They think there will be a vote at the neighborhood association meeting to support building the Billion Dollar Boondoggle known as the Salem River Crossing, or Third Bridge.
And also to build Marine Drive, which would connect with the as yet unpaid-for bridge -- should Salem-area residents decide they want to pay a $1.50 toll each way to cross the unneeded bridge, along with an increase in the local gas tax, vehicle registration fees, and property taxes.
Well, Salem Bridge Solutions should tone down their excitement, since their supposed most important meeting of their campaign comes with a big problem.
On the agenda there's no mention of a vote on the Third Bridge. In fact, there's not even a mention of the Salem River Crossing/Third Bridge at all. Have a look.
So even though both the pro-bridge (Salem Bridge Solutions) and anti-bridge (No 3rd Bridge) groups are urging their supporters to come to the West Salem Neighborhood Association meeting tonight and vote for or against the bridge (only people who reside in West Salem or own a business there can vote), the end result will be tainted by this subject not being on the agenda.
I've been told that the bylaws of the Neighborhood Association require a disclaimer if there's a vote on something that wasn't publicized ahead of time via the agenda.
"In cases where it becomes necessary to make a decision on an issue not published on the agenda, and the decision must be made before the next scheduled General Membership meeting, any statement of that decision should be accompanied with a disclaimer that reads, "The West Salem Neighborhood Association vote on this decision was made only by those in attendance on [meeting date] without prior public agenda notification.”
Reportedly several pushy people from Salem Bridge Solutions demanded that there be a vote on the Third Bridge after the June 19 meeting agenda was prepared by the West Salem Neighborhood Association Executive Committee and published on the web.
Sounds like an unwise move, since now the vote will be largely meaningless.
If West Salem residents and business owners don't have any advance notice that the pros and cons of the Third Bridge will be discussed and voted on at tonight's meeting, obviously this takes away BIG TIME from the credibility of a bridge vote.
So regardless which way the vote goes, it will have to be accompanied by the above-mentioned disclaimer:
"The West Salem Neighborhood Association vote on this decision was made only by those in attendance on June 19, 2017 without prior public agenda notification.”
Which is screwy, undemocratic, and messed-up.