Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Is Quigley process really public?

The Quigley applicant's full-page advertisement in the April 20 issue raises concerns about the transparency of the annexation deliberations. The ad asserted that the Hailey City Council will decide the matter on May 21. How can he know this? There is no City Council meeting agenda available for that date.

  The city has paid for two studies, the fiscal impact analysis and the water rights evaluation. Neither has yet been presented to the public. The city also has yet to finalize revisions to its development impact fee schedule, which requires that the Development Impact Fee Advisory Committee meet to make a recommendation to the Planning and Zoning Commission, which then must make a recommendation to the City Council.

The city's consultant has not yet produced the annexation cost-benefit study to determine whether our taxes need to be raised to help pay for this development. With the downturn of our economy, most of us can't afford a tax increase for something we don't even know will benefit our community. Assuming that there will be time allowed for public comment, council discussion and legal research, it seems like there is a lot to do to in less than a month.

Perhaps none of these public processes actually matters (including the P&Z recommendation to deny the application) because the annexation deal has already been finalized?

Kelly Hackbarth


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