Mayor Wants $10 Million Bond for his new city hall and other things.

Here is the link to the Mayor’s Bond proposal which he will present at the council business meeting this coming Tuesday, January 7 at 6:00pm. Let him know what you think about it. This increases our property taxes again!

On Next Door there has been a lengthy discussion about the new city hall plans and costs. Here is your opportunity to speak out directly to the person and the people who will vote to increase your property taxes. Venting on Next Door does nothing to change the direction of these costs. You must let your voice be heard so those in power know what the citizens of Ashland want and are thinking.

Here are some facts and opinions: the mayor held all these committee meetings with two councilors and others in secret, no published minutes, no public input, no citizens from the budget committee.

  • a bond issue allows us to vote on the increase to our property taxes
  • costs for the projects need much closer scrutiny by the public and other professionals
  • retrofitting the city hall for seismic reasons and for additional space is presented as a clear and present danger to city staff, but what about the rest of the downtown plaza area that is also a clear and present danger for employees and tourists who need to be notified of this danger
  • taxpayers need to know what is coming in addition to these capital projects like a $35 million water treatment plant and a $91 million water master plan in the next ten years all of which will require bond issues or increases to our property taxes and water fees
  • the jail bond issue is on its way as well, $171 million jail which we can vote down but the rest of the county can vote for it; Ashland still pays the lion’s share of the jail through our property taxes

Let your voice be heard NOW at the council meeting. Know that the more people who show up and speak at a council meeting makes a difference. We can’t do much about what is happening in the rest of our country but we can demand democratic processes and public conversation on these issues when there has been very little thus far.

Chronicle Staff

//inserted by Sharon