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HASSO HERING

A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

And another ballot title challenge

Written February 24th, 2015 by Hasso Hering

Now there’s a second pending challenge of the ballot title and language for the May 19 bond election on Albany’s plans for a new police headquarters and main fire station. Tom Cordier filed the first one in court Monday and followed up with an amended version Tuesday. Fellow city resident Gordon Shadle filed the second […]


Tom Cordier challenges ballot title

Written February 23rd, 2015 by Hasso Hering

Tom Cordier, a member of the citizens committee that recommended a bond issue to build a new Albany police headquarters and main fire station, has gone to court and challenged the ballot title for the measure. He contends that the ballot question is neither as concise nor as fair as the state law requires.


Panel settles on lower police-fire bond

Written November 13th, 2014 by Hasso Hering

If the city council goes along with the recommendation of a panel of citizens, and it almost certainly will, Albany voters next May will decide on an $18 million bond issue to pay for a new police headquarters and downtown fire station. The amount is $2.3 million less than the proposal voters rejected in 2013.


A question of notice: Too little, too much?

Written March 3rd, 2014 by Hasso Hering

No one testified in opposition before the Albany Planning Commission on Jan. 6 when the panel unanimously endorsed a code change to allow a Bottle Bill redemption center. A month later, when the issue came before the city council, five people testified against the idea and two others wrote letters, also opposed. What made the difference? […]


Albany email dispute: Story continues

Written October 2nd, 2013 by

Tom Cordier, the citizen activist in Albany, has scored a partial victory for the public’s right to get public records, in this case email addresses. The case also raises a question about the city’s own use of those addresses. Cordier had sought to use a list of 33,800 addresses to which the city government emails its […]


City finance: When reports confuse

Written September 24th, 2013 by

Tables with lots of numbers are useful, but not if the tables are incomplete and either confusing or misleading as a result. Take, for example, the city of Albany’s “Popular Annual Financial Report.” Officials are proud of this 20-page illustrated effort to explain the money angle of city government. The city staff has a long history of […]


A question of confidentiality, with updates

Written September 9th, 2013 by

The Albany city government has turned down a request by Tom Cordier for a list of about 27,000 email addresses to which it sends City Bridges, its monthly newsletter with stories on city programs and services. Cordier wanted the list so, as a private citizen, he could pay a company to email an appeal to […]


Albany briefing: Yes to what?

Written August 19th, 2013 by

What are those “Yes” signs around Albany trying to say? Yes to what? To refresh your memory, if you’re a voter in Albany, no later than Sept. 3 the county clerks in Linn and Benton counties will mail you a ballot for a city election. If you want to vote you have to mail it […]


City debt debate nears a harmonious end

Written May 21st, 2013 by

It was all sweetness and light Monday at the unveiling before the Albany City Council of a proposed charter amendment to fix problems with the city’s new debt  limit. Council members nodded their agreement with the proposal and will probably act in June to put the measure on the ballot in a special election Sept. […]


Albany: Why rile up 5,000-plus voters?

Written April 9th, 2013 by

Tom Cordier, holding papers, after Monday’s city council work session. By declaring Albany’s debt-limit charter amendment to have passed, the city council could make peace with the more than 5,000 voters who approved it last month. But apparently it won’t. At a work session Monday, the council majority seemed to agree to go ahead and […]


 
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