Obviously we can't be certain that the Salem River Crossing (or Third Bridge) project will die a well-deserved death tomorrow at the February 11 City Council meeting.
But since the six progressives on the nine-member Council all were elected after promising to fight what I like to call the Billion Dollar Boondoggle, smart money would bet on this draft letter being sent by the Mayor to the Federal Highway Administration and Oregon Department of Transportation on Tuesday.
Download No Further Action PDF
(City of Salem staff have another draft letter ready to go if, against all odds, the City Council were to give a go-ahead to the Salem River Crossing project.)
John Gear, a Salem attorney, has a great idea if the Third Bridge does indeed die tomorrow. He wants to have a "lesson learned" inquiry occur that studies how the project ended up being managed so poorly, wasting over $8 million of taxpayer money on a futile effort.
Here's the letter that Gear has sent to Mayor Bennett and the City Council. EIS stands for Environmental Impact Statement. Gear does a great job summarizing the problems that faced this project from the start. Perhaps heads don't need to roll at City Hall, but maybe they do.
We won't know unless the Salem River Crossing post-mortem happens. And as Gear notes, obviously this should be done by an independent panel, not the same City officials who played such a big role in screwing things up.
and the Salem City Council