Posted by Charity on March 31st, 2006

I’m going to take a break from railing against socialism to talk about something local.

The Community and Economic Development Office (CEDO) has released the results of the Moran Plant survey we filled out when we voted (the yellow ballot). Regarding use of the space: 86% liked or strongly liked the idea of a waterfront park. 74% liked or strongly liked the idea of a community recreation center. Regarding the building: 66% said whether to keep it or remove it was dependent on the decided use. 55% said they wanted it torn down. Only 34% voted to fix it up. The complete results are available on the CEDO website here.

In a Free Press article from March 17, 2006, CEDO Director Michael Monte said that there would most likely be a specific plan with a price tag placed before the voters in November.

I think it’s great that the city government has finally gotten the message that the voters want to be consulted on waterfront development matters. What concerns me, though, is that they want to put this on the November ballot.

This November, we have for the first time in ages, congressional races that warrant real attention. We have a US House and a US Senate seat that are open. We also have elections for Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and State Legislature.

The voters of Burlington should be, and will be, focused on these state and national races. Then is not the time to decide the fate of the waterfront.

Next Town Meeting Day, there will be little of note happening. We will have our standard ward races for one City Council seat and one School Board seat. There might be a ballot item that draws attention. Other than that, there will be nothing distracting us from an open and lively public debate about whatever proposal is put forth for the Moran site.

The citizens of Burlington have made it clear time and time again that we want the waterfront development to be a public process. Shouldn’t the vote wait until a time when that discussion can have our full attention?

What do you think?

13 Responses to “The future of the Moran Plant”

  1. What happened to “leave it as it is”? Wasn’t that an option? Or will we not be presented with a choice that doesn’t involve the expenditure of tax dollars?

    Will Michael Monte still be employed by the town of burlington in November?

    And are there really that many more people in wards 4 and 7 than other wards, or just more people who vote?

  2. I think having it there in November is actually a really good idea for the reasons you mentioned. It does seem a little rushed, but many, many more people will turn out for November’s election, and so will cast a vote for the plan.

    I think it’s actually more likely to be scrutinized in November, not less.

    But then, I don’t live in Burlington…

  3. You have a good point about turn out, but my concern was more about the pre-election discussion. When there is a full ballot, not every issue/candidate gets discussed as much as it should. I think this is one thing that needs a good discussion.

    Hey, you can’t have an opinion if you don’t live here! :)

  4. All wards are supposed to have the same number of registered voters. The irony is that wards 4 and 7 actually have less registered voters than other wards. They just have the largest turnout. They always do. Last year, those two wards accounted for 41% of the votes cast (out of 7 wards).

    I haven’t analyzed this year’s turn out.

    There was no choice for “none of the above”. The justification for that was “you could have filled in ‘strongly dislike’ on everything.” (Michael Monte said that on channel 17.)

  5. So we’ll be forced to vote to spend more money to fix a non-problem in a “budget crisis” year. Will the shenanigans never end?

  6. You could run for office yourself… I can see the posters now…

    “Vote for Anonymous!”
    “Anonymous for Office!”
    “Anonymus is running because his/her/its undisclosed plan is shenanigans-free!”
    “Anonymous: Just as credible as the name-candidates!”
    “Anonymous: Not afraid to stand behind whatever beliefs he/she/it happens to believe in!”
    “Anonymous: Vote for me and my undisclosed plan, and maybe I’ll grow the guts to tell you who I am!”

    Oh Anonymous! You’re my hero!

  7. “You could run for office yourself”

    I’d have said the same for you before you discovered the internet, professor threadjack, but I’m pretty sure that’s all over now.

  8. You must live in front of your computer.

  9. You never know, though. I could still win an election. Look at Marion Barry…

  10. Jesus, man, get a grip.

    Here’s my plan: provide an option on the November ballot that says “Leave the Moran Plant as it is until Burlington is in a better financial position. Cost: $0″

    Who’s with me?

  11. Yeah, great idea (delay until next March). In fact, how about we just keep the November ballot free of all issues so the candidates receive proper attention? And when March rolls around again, if something more important comes up, how about we just delay the Moran Plant discussion then too?

    All sarcasm aside, I’m with Resmer on this one. Plus, if it’ll get torn down, I’d rather have 4 months of planning done so it’s down (hopefully) by summer ’07.

  12. That’s not really fair. (I know, you said it was sarcasm.) I was just saying that the local issues should be dealt with on Town Meeting Day when they can get the proper attention. I’ve always felt that way.

    Besides, if they are going to have a price tag for it, that means most of the planning will be done already.

    Thanks for commenting.

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