Councilor Daily, if you accept the challenge, this is your next battle for transparency; this time by the organization of which you are a part.
During early 2014, then Coos Bay councilor Muenchrath requested a legal opinion of the proposed South Coast Community Foundation (SCCF) concept from the city of Coos Bay legal counsel (lawyer). The mayor or city manager may sign the employment contract but the lawyer is employed by and paid by the citizens of Coos Bay; not employed by or paid individually by the city manager, mayor, or any councilmember. This is the proposed SCCF (inclusive of Community Enhancement Plan) being pushed by county commissioner Sweet where we tax paying citizens will lose all control of what will be significant tax monies to a small group of unelected people who do not report to the citizens. This is the proposed CEP that many of us believe is good for Veresen / JCEP but will yield significantly fewer dollars to the people as fees in lieu of taxes. We’re talking control of potentially hundreds of millions of the people’s money here. Much has changed in the past two years; and, at a minimum, before this CEP is next endorsed by any local professional politician, it’s time for the county assessor to go before the people and assure us that fees received and distributed to the people will be not one dollar less than the money to be received as tax during the next 20 years.
Councilor Muenchrath received that requested (written) legal opinion – acknowledged by the city manager to be on file with the city. Rumor circulated that the legal opinion did not support the SCCF. In writing, Dr. Muenchrath stated that he has no objection to the document being released to the public. During June 2014, with assistance from the county DA, a copy of the lawyer’s opinion was requested to be released to the public. This request was rejected by the city manager. It’s the people’s document, paid for with the people’s money. In your editorial words Councilor Daily, “What do you (council members) have to hide?” Please release the document in its entirety (currently relevant or not) now.
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