In Our View: Do Your Homework
Plenty of learning opportunities are on tap for baseball stadium and C-Tran issues
Wednesday, August 24, 2011
Clark County residents have ample opportunities in coming weeks to learn about two important issues in our community: the baseball stadium being considered as a possible site for a minor league baseball team, and the Nov. 8 ballot measure that will propose a 0.2 percent sales tax increase (2 cents on a $10 purchase) to preserve existing C-Tran bus levels and meet projected growth of C-Van service.
The Columbian encourages your attention to both issues. The baseball stadium not only represents a new possible venture by the county into professional sports, but requires collaboration on a proposed admissions tax between the county and local cities. Any sense of teamwork (particularly between the county and the city of Vancouver) has yet to materialize.
As for the C-Tran ballot measure, public involvement is important because a public decision is needed on election day, and the best voter is a fully informed voter.
Learn about the stadium
The public enlightenment process for the baseball stadium hits midseason form at 10 a.m. Wednesday when county commissioners conduct a work session in the sixth-floor hearing room of the Clark County Public Service Center, 1300 Franklin St. No public testimony is received at work sessions, but this will be a good chance to hear experts discuss the matter, and public-comment sessions will occur at subsequent regular meetings of the commissioners. Also, commissioners will hold a public hearing later if the process continues. The Columbian in print and online editions will have full reports from the work session. The newspaper has endorsed exploring the idea of bringing the Class A Yakima Bears here as a minor-league affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Another learning opportunity occurs next week when the Neighborhood Association Council of Clark County and the Vancouver Neighborhood Alliance have scheduled a public forum on the stadium proposal. It begins at 7 p.m. Aug. 31 in the same hearing room at the Public Service Center.
More information from pro-stadium activists can be found by Facebook users at http://facebook.com/BaseballVancouver.
Sunday’s Columbian included a story by Stephanie Rice that featured “nine things to know about” the proposal to build a $22.7 million stadium at Clark College.
Learn about C-Tran
One of the most extensive outreach efforts by C-Tran was made Tuesday. If you’ve still got your copy of that day’s Columbian, look for the four-page “Public -Transit Ballot Measure” insert. It explains in detail what will happen if the bond ballot measure passes, and what will happen if it fails.
The Columbian will take an editorial stance on this issue as the Nov. 8 election draws near.
Starting next Tuesday, C-Tran has arranged a heavy schedule of nine public meetings through Sept. 29. The meetings were designed to meet virtually any individual’s time-and-place needs. Six of the two-hour meetings will start at 6 p.m., two will start at 11 a.m., and one will start at 5:30 p.m. Five meetings are set for Vancouver with one meeting each in La Center, Battle Ground, Portland and Camas. For details about the meetings, visit http://c-tran.com/ballot_measure.html and scroll to the bottom of the page.
That same website is the best online source for information about the ballot measure, including what measures C-Tran has already taken to cut costs and increase revenue, why a sales tax increase is proposed, how C-Tran is funded and the complete text of the ballot measure.
Whether you’re for or against these two significant local proposals, one thing is certain: You’ve got ample resources for information to support your stance.