Saturday, August 15, 2009

Spotlight On Two More Upcoming Council Agenda Items

The 36th/46th street water tanks land in the council's lap; $32 million in mysterious new bonding pops up out of nowhere

There are two more council agendas we'd like to highlight this morning. Noteworthy council agenda items seem to be falling out of the woodwork this week.

First, we'd like to alert our readers to a matter which is being taken up in a council work session next Thursday, 8/20/09. The topic? The 36th/46th street water tanks. Read the city council's press release here:

WORK SESSION: INFORMATION REGARDING THE 36th/46th STREET WATER TANK TO BE DISCUSSED

As our readers will recall, as part of the City Council's Water Horizons project, our city council last year approved the construction of a water tank at the top of 46th St, and pumping stations along the east bench. Early in the spring however, the council learned that Boss Godfrey had abandoned the 46th street project, and had been quietly working on a $6 million tank installation at the top of 36th street instead. Ultimately the matter was sent back to the planning commission, which last week issued a recommendation to the council to approve an amendment to the City’s Capital Improvement Plan, to substitute the 36th street tank installation.

This matter has taken a long and winding road, but now finds itself squarely back in the council's lap. For those who've been following Weber County Forum's numerous numerous articles regarding this topic, Thursday's council session should prove to be quite enlightening. Moreover, the council is making an exception to the general rule that lumpencitizens have no voice at council work sessions. On Thursday night, anyone who wants to speak up has five minutes.

Next, we'll highlight an agenda item which has popped up on both the council and RDA calenders for this coming Tuesday, 8/18/09. Frankly we have absolutely no idea what this is all about, but this RDA Agenda notation definitely caught our attention:

9. Reports from the Administration:
a. Tax Increment Revenue Refunding Bond. Proposed Resolution 2009-4 authorizing the issuance and sale of not more than $32,000,000 aggregate principal amount of its taxable revenue refunding bonds; and related matters. (Adopt/not adopt resolution – roll call vote)
Read the full RDA and Council agendas here:
8/18/09 RDA Agenda
8/18/09 Council Agenda
Reliable sources inform us that the Bank of New York, which issued the original letter of credit guaranteeing bonding for the Junction, has suddenly revoked that letter of credit. Perhaps it has something to do with that. Maybe it has something to do with With Boss Godfrey's proposed tax increment funding bailout. It's fuzzy, to say the least.

While we confess we have no idea what's behind this new $32 million council/RDA agenda item, we have absolute confidence we'll soon find out. At the very least, we hope someone within our WCF readership will attend Tuesday's council session and then report back. Better yet, perhaps some of our better informed readers can fill in the blanks in our lower comments section, in the interval between now and Tuesday's RDA/Council meetings.

That's it for now, folks.

Who will be the first to comment?

11 comments:

OgdenLover said...

It really annoys me that it is usually impossible to ascertain what is really behind the various issues given in the Council and RDA agendas. Why does everything have to be so cryptic? Even if there are strict space limits in the SE listings (which I don't think is the case), the agendas posted on the City website and disseminated by email don't have to be so obscure.

Is this another example of the Godfrey Administration's mantra "I could tell you, but then I'd have to kill you"?

OgdenLover said...

To return to the matters discussed today, I can't help wondering if the Mayor's uncle being the head of the Planning Commission has anything to do with that organ's suggestion that the 36th St. project is OK after all, even though it wasn't approved in advance.

Rockford J. said...

Once again, for those who are not paying attention: there will be no new construction below or to the south of the mouth of Taylors Canyon.
Doubtless, the water tank relocation is tied to the houses the Mayor long ago decided would be built in the boulder field immediately above Mount Ogden Golf Course. 27th street would continue on up and wrap around to 36th street, with mcmansions, a hotel, restaurant, contemporary landscaping.
Where there is now dirt and rocks, scrub-trees, birds, rattlesnakes.

This area shall not be developed until a generation of our children has passed, so that the future can assess the value of the land, decide what a couple of thousand acres at the top of some small city is really worth.

There will not be a give away, just because of who holds office. The land up there is a trust. Best to move on. Nothing to see here. Scram, kid.

Curmudgeon said...

Comment bumped to front page

RWS Joe Jones said...

Say Rockford, you mention rattlesnakes. Ever golf at MOGC? If so, and I'm sure you ain't no Tiger Woods, you'd probably push or pull some shots into the rough, which isn't what's called the 2nd cut. The rough at MOGC IS scrub oak, rocks and RATTLESNAKES! So, be very careful when you go hunting for your ball, even if it happens be be laying in the middle of any fairway.

Just because there's a developed, and I use that erm loosely, golf course there, doesn't mean that the land it sits on is free of these creatures and the others negatives your suggest there is that would be replaced by mcmansions, etc.

Rockford J. said...

We don't golf, but thanks for the pro-tip.

disgusted said...

RWS Joe Jones

nice sales job on the mount ogden golf course.

must say though that ive been playing there for years and have never come across one rattle snake though im sure they are up there.

how many have you encountered up there and on what holes.

RWS Joe Jones said...

MOGC is a great place to play golf and the course should remain open. Never did like Godfrey's attempts to allow Peterson to build 300 "vacation" homes there. I didn't like the urban gondola idea and still don't.

I'm not a developer, but if I were I'd probably look for a better area to put a ski resort than the slopes of Malan's Basin. The impact on the East Bench infrastructure would be disastrous and the MO Community Plan, along with WSU's refusal to sell some of it's land to Peterson, was just what was needed to put a stop to this madness.

But as far as snakes on the GC, I've seen 'em on #4, #7,#13, #14 and #17. They hang out in the rocks and low lying brush around the do leg bends, so watch yourselves. Even saw one that somebody killed hanging from a tree on one of the front nine holes. A few deer now and then and a cow moose who spent her time in the water holding pond off of #10.

But damn, that is one beautiful place to play golf. I wonder, since Godfrey is trying to make this town an outdoor sports capital, why the hell is he so against golf courses? Isn't that an outdoor sport?

Now, I can't blow everyone out of the water with my agreeing opinion here, but how's subsidizing this golf course any different than throwing in some money on other developments? I need some help understanding the logic.

Jim Hutchins said...

Joe Jones:

A good question. Here's my take on it.

There is a difference between public amenities that a government provides for the betterment of its citizens, and a private business.

For example, even though I don't have children, I happily provide tax dollars to support schools because the nation is a better place when its people are educated. I don't golf, but I recognize that a golf course is a useful amenity for a city to have.

I do use the roads, and the trail system, and I breathe the air and use the toilet.

Historically, government has provided things for its citizens to share.

Then, on the other hand, we have private enterprise. By definition, private enterprises make a profit and while they may provide a public service incidentally, their main function is to provide profits to the business owners.

I don't mind subsidizing the commonweal, and as I said above, it doesn't have to be things I personally use, just things that the citizens normally support. I do object to subsidizing private enterprise with my tax dollars.

RWS Joe Jones said...

That was a nice, concise and understandable answer to my question, Mr. Hutchins. I'm beginning to understand why some of you feel the way you do about the City's subsidizing private development and involving itself in some of the entreprenaurial projects that come up. Seems there's a history that has been more negative than positive and it has soured many people, making them skeptical about subsidies, using TIF and CIF to aid developments, developments that actually COULD help the city were they to get up and running.

This is good dialouge and it's nice to get a mature answer instead of some of the verbal shellacking that some dish out. Not much is learned from that, but in an answer like yours, much can be gleaned. However, I'd still be careful about using any of those aforementioned toilets when you're hiking through the trail system above Mt. Ogden Park.

ozboy said...

Local governments getting involved in private business enterprises seems to be happening all over the country these days.

What is so troubling about Ogden doing it is the sheer incompetence and dishonesty that the mayor has demonstrated with the numerous deals he has put together. The other thing that is difficult to take is the incessant secretive give away of public money to his cronies.

I think if the mayor was even remotely honest and competent as a dealster that most of us would not have much of a problem with him. As it is pretty much everything he does is not as advertised and most of his projects are failures which cost us tax payers big time.

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