Saturday, March 31, 2012

LO Resident Suggests "give up a little of your property rights" As A Compromise. Residents Voice Their Ire Online

To All COLA LO Members,

This week a community leader suggested that Lake Oswego residents give up some of their property rights and allow limited public access to the lake.    The article was published online in the LO Review and can be read at the following Compromise?

It seems citizens are irate over the continued erosion of their property rights within the city and they aren't willing to give up any more.    Its been an ongoing issue for several years and the perception is this administration has eroded property rights consistently.  

The perception that the mayor recently invited outsiders to occupy the lake is further inflaming the situation and is believed to be a manipulative approach toward gaining additional favor with interest groups.   The details can be found in previous articles and Occupy Invitation?

There seems to be little tolerance in the community for further erosion of property rights under this administration and its documented in the online comments and blogs.   It will be interesting to see how this issue impacts the fall elections.   

Please notify all members, contacts, and friends.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Clackamas County Race Heating Up - Is it an "extremist race?"

To All  COLA LO Members,

This week Dave Hunt who is running for Clackamas County Chair told supporters that his opponents are backed by an "extremist " group.    Its the latest effort in an ongoing campaign theme of labeling the opposition as "tea Party" etc.  

Many citizens believe this is just the beginning of the campaign to smear candidates rather than identify strong positions and allow the voters to decide.  

Its quite clear given the success of recent ballot initiatives that the "Clackastani Revolt"  is in high gear as citizens show deep concern over not having the opportunity to vote on tax increases or expensive light rail projects.

The Oregonian published an article this week describing comments made in campaign materials regarding several candidates.    Extremists buying the County Election or Campaign Hype? 

The online comments from citizens once again are insightful as usual.  One comment posted by a citizen states: 

Oh how funny this is. Dave Hunt is so concerned about his county he's running for chair to help stop all the extreme rebellion stuff. After all that can't be good. All those public votes and all. It's best to keep all things as the current commission has the county heading. Just as Metro and TriMet insist. Dave Hunt for the status quo!
But he isn't telling the voters how he is opposed to all of the initiative and rebellion progress.
Or how he'll seek to stop it and maintain Clackamas County as a Portland Colony.

To understand how score the phoniness of Hunt et al one needs only visit their candidate's voter pamphlet statements.

Dave Hunt, Charlotte Lehan, Martha Schrader, and Jamie Damon say noting about their opposition to the entire rebellion in Clackamas County or about their real Portland progressive selves in the voters pamphlet.
They are all deliberately deceiving the voting public in hopes of getting elected under false impressions. No one relying upon the voters pamphlet would have the slightest idea these 4 candidates are no better than any Portland politician and the scoundrels who took over the county years ago. People want change and these candidates are committed to preventing it. By hook or crook.

This will certainly be an interesting election.    While COLA LO has not taken a position on the primary election we can say it certainly is heating up to be an epic battle  of allegations.   The candidates are all relatively well known so it my make for a clearer choice in the fall election.  

Please notify all members, contacts, and friends...

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Clackamas County - Group Supports a Slate of Candidates

To All COLA LO Members,

This week it was disclosed that the Oregon Transformation Project is providing significant support for a group of candidates in the County elections. 

Taking a page from the LO City Council election in 2010 this group has endorsed a "slate" of candidates rather than  each  individual.

An article in the Oregonian outlines the details of the support and the nature of the group Oregon Transformation Project Supports Smith, Knapp, and Ludlow.  

It also notes that the group supported the citizen driven initiative that will require a public vote on any expenditure or staff time spent on light rail projects in the county.    

That initiative will be on the ballot in September.   

Only time will tell how all of this is perceived by the voters but its clear this will be a very active election for all candidates.   

Please notify all members contacts and friends. 

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Gloves Coming Off in Clackamas County Election & MAX Expansion Battles?

To All COLA LO Members,

It seems the news of the County Election in May and the expansion of ballot measures requiring votes for light rail are gaining attention.    This week a local blogger outlines the actions taken by local politicians in an attempt to counter the revolt in Clackamas County.  

In the blog post Gloves Coming Off in Max Expansion Battle a local blogger outlines the tactics in the Clackamas County Election.   It seems the strategy is to label all supporters of citizen driven initiatives and their preferred candidates as "Tea Party"  while the pro light rail candidates which are approved by the establishment try to position themselves as moderates and avoid addressing their voting record and history. 

Its an interesting political dynamic along the lines of "the empire returns"  fame.   A review of the blog comments provides some insight into the minds of the voters. Their comment's include:

It's kind of amusing that the jammers want to use Tparty as a bogeyman, given that the 70% victory in Clackistan clearly involved a lot of Democrat and Independent votes. So if you voted against the "planners" you're a Tpartier? Too funny!


Dave Hunt, Charlotte Lehan, Martha Schrader, and Jamie Damon have been and are opposed to the entire rebellion in Clackamas County.  They deserve no more than the total of 30% of votes against the Urban Renewal initiative measure that passed by 70%.  However, all of those establishment rail mafia county commissioner candidates reveal nothing about their real selves in the voters pamphlet.
Each and every one of them has created a false caricature of themselves for voters to be deceived.

While COLA LO has taken no position to endorse candidates in the May primary it will be very interesting to see how the county votes given the dynamics involved and the "spin" that is being presented in this round of elections.   Only time will tell the true assessment of the voters in the county.  

Please notify all members, contacts, and friends.  

Monday, March 26, 2012

Clackistani Revolt Against Streetcar & Light Rail Spreads to Washington County

To all COLA LO Members,

In a very sudden and dramatic event the revolt in Clackamas County spread to Washington County last week.   Voters deeply disturbed by the absence of a public vote on major projects made a dramatic statement to local government.  
The Portland Tribune reports that petitions were filed in four west side cities to require a vote on financing any new rail projects in these cities.   The cities include Tigard, Sherwood, Tualatin, and King City.   Its a strong showing once again of the citizen lead initiative drives to turn back the defined direction of spending without public participation thought voter approved bonding.  

The article Petitions Filed provides additional details.   At the same time a coalition has formed to fight the Trimet budget and a believed bias toward rail over buses.   The details can be found in Coalition.

It seems the LO streetcar issue and its postponement stirred up the pot and created a "Hornets Nest" of citizen driven initiatives across the county with its success..Now that deep resentment of actions being taken by local government has appeared in a neighboring county.   

It will be interesting to see how this impacts local government in Washington County and elections in the fall.  Much of the consternation over recent issues has been about the absence of public approval on large projects and fee/tax increases.

Please notify all contacts, members, and friends.   

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Local Blogger Critical of Foothills Development

To All COLA LO Members,

This week a local blogger claims that the "scam wagons"  are circling around Lake Oswego once again his comment is related to the Foothills development.   

Its a harshly critical blog post but one that everyone should be aware of since Portland is very familiar with the high density development efforts under Urban Renewal.   

The blog Post Recircling the Scam Wagons says that taxpayers funds are safe for the moment but implies they are in jeopardy over the long term.   One online comment may have been even more critical of the effort and is quoted as saying: 

Don't be surprised by proposing a Local Improvement District (LID) that is even more extensive to cover the fed/state streetcar money losses. It could extend even pass the downtown and the First Addition neighborhood, and farther to the west into other neighborhoods. You could say "East meets West". How would you like another $450 dollars a year tacked onto your home or small business property taxes?
Of course, they'll still talk urban renewal too to steal money from schools, police, fire and parks.

It will be interesting to see the direction on the Foothills project given that the streetcar is no longer an option in the near term.    Clearly it appears that the city will spend the original budget on Foothills and may ask for more funding.   

All of this comes at a time when citizens seem to be very concerned about basic needs including streets and schools.

Please notify all members, contacts, and friends.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Occupy Oswego Lake Bows Out Due to Weather!

To All COLA LO Members,

Well the snow was  a bit much for the people calling to occupy the lake yesterday.   

The delay and the announcement that they would come back for a sunny day became fodder for blog posts and online comments.   Here is a good example Don't Want to get Wet. 

At the same time the LOPD would not disclose its plans should the group decide to trespass onto the lake as threatened.,    The Lo Review released comments this week in an article Occupation on Hold including potential tactics that the lake corp may use to prevent the effort.  

The Oregonian reported this week that the occupation was postponed Until it's Sunny and that the facebook page had achieved a few likes.

One can only wonder if this City's administration is disappointed or pleased with the postponement of the stated effort to occupy oswego lake given the comments of the Mayor in a Willamette week article which many believe actually invited the effort.  If there was?

Was this just another distraction in an ongoing effort to confuse the voters about the real issues and concerns of residents?   Only time will tell but it represents another chapter in the saga.  

Please notify all members, contacts, and friends. 

Mayoral Candidate Greg Macpherson Publishes Article

To all COLA LO Members,

This week mayoral candidate Greg Macpherson published an article about livability in the lake oswego review.    Citizens are anxious to hear his views on the issues within the city and the article describes efforts to enhance livability and the difficulty to find consensus on what is attractive.  

His comments attracted a lot of online public comments which were very critical and not necessarily expected based on the subject of the article.  

The comments provide some insight into a wide range of community concerns regarding the mayoral election this fall.   

The article City, citizens promote livability is interesting.  

One citizen provided the following comments: 

Greg...A great way to preserve livability would be to immediately cancel the Street Car project and tell the developers in Foothills that they need to finance their dream through their banks.

We leave it to the reader to decide the merits of the article and the public comments online at the above link.   No doubt this election year will prove to be very interesting for all involved.  

Please notify all members, contacts, and friends.  

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Local Citizen Questions the Logic of LOSD Decisions!

To All COLA LO Members,

This week a local citizen and community leader published an opinion in the LO Review on recent decisions by LOSD.   

The article seriously questions the decisions made on school closures and specifically closing the Uplands Elementary school.    This comes after the LOR published an article that a parent panel is suggesting reopening Palisades elementary Parent Panel.  

In the article the author states:

Logic needs to be brought back into this discussion instead of continuing down this destructive path. Hopefully we now have enough evidence that the board can understand the logic.

It seems the online comments are highly supportive of the article and the author's position.    The article can be found at Improve LOSD Schools.  It provides for interesting reading and suggests that reforms may be needed within LOSD.  

The author is a member of a local grass roots organization focused on our schools LO United.

Could LOSD be the next area where citizens demand more input and reform?   We leave it to the readers to decide but the article and online comments clearly show the concerns of the community.

Please notify all members, contacts, and friends.    

Monday, March 19, 2012

Lake Oswego Real Estate Continues to Decline in Value According to Zillow

To All COLA LO members,

This past week Zillow released new data on LO real estate values and at the same time the Oregonian issued an editorial supporting a review of the Property Tax system at the state level.   This all comes at a time when many residents are asking why Property taxes are increasing while the value of their homes is actually declining.   Its an ongoing discussion within the community.  

Zillow reports that property values in Lake Oswego declined 5.9% year on year as of January 2012.   Their report and graphic can be found at LO Home Values.   The Oregonian is asking for a review of property taxes at the state level and mentions compression.   This past year the LO review reported that in some parts of the LOSD boundary compression has impacted the local option.    The details can be found at Local Option Hit. and Another Look.

During the past month several real estate brokers testified at the planning commission hearing that the public access issue to the lake had caused sales to be terminated and that the impact of this direction was or would actually lower property values on the lake.   It was an interesting concept that has many in the community wondering if the direction of this city administration is actually lowering property value.   Realtytrac provides further insight into the market in terms of foreclosures which now number about 1 in 7 sales according to their numbers LO Foreclosures.

Only time will tell but its clear that values continue to decline according to Zillow.   Please notify all members, contacts, and friends. 

LO Citizens Provide a variety of Perspectives in Recent Articles

To All COLA LO Members,

Over the past two Weeks residents have provided a variety of perspectives on issues facing the city in their recent articles to both the LO review and the Oregonian.  

The articles provide insight into the mindset of the community as it proceeds toward an election in the fall.  

Opinions range from the city not being a good neighbor Not the Right Way to a resident being embarrassed by the outcry on the lake access issue Actions Disgust to  comment on the state of the city in State of City causes Chuckle.   

Citizens also presented their views on important project priorities My Decision Would Be and community divisiveness End Divisiveness.    Additional thoughts on the issues were also printed in the letters to the editor section last week Letters. 

The variety of views and online comments provide insight into the community.   Please notify all members, contacts, and friends.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

County Survey Results Mirror LO Sentiment

To All COLA LO Members,

Clackamas County Residents responded broadly to a professional survey conducted for the county commissioners.    This survey is similar to several surveys done in LO over the past two years.    The alignment with voter sentiment between the county and LO is remarkable.   

The Oregonian published an article on the survey this week.   Less Upbeat about Direction!

Interestingly enough the survey results were less critical than the success of recent citizen driven ballot initiatives might suggest.   

It will be interesting to see how the "spin" will play out in county elections in both May and November.   Will this have an impact on the upcoming City Council elections in Lake Oswego?   Only time will tell but its clear the voters are concerned. 

Please notify all members, contacts, and friends.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

The Clackamas County Revolt Continues?

To All COLA LO Members,

It seems that the unease with local government has spawned additional efforts across the county.    This week citizen driven initiatives produced a stunning defeat for the current direction in local government across several cities.    In Estacada a citizen driven initiative won overwhelmingly with 80% of the vote to require that all changes to Urban Renewal efforts be voted on by the public.  The competing measure sponsored by local government received only a third of the yes votes.    Estacada Vote Required on Urban Renewal.

In Damascus voters approved a citizen driven initiative by 79% that requires a public vote on all new rules and ordinances for the city as they relate to Metro.   Because the text refers to "any ordinance or plan," the measure would arguably apply not only to the comprehensive plan and broad city-initiated items but to zoning changes and smaller tweaks to larger plans.  Primarily though it is focused on the the city comprehensive plan.    Damascus Voters Approve.

The success of citizen drive ballot initiatives has been stunning in the past two years as voters ongoing frustration with the agenda of their elected representatives just continues to multiply and as representatives continue to ignore the voters sentiment in their agenda.    Consistently many elected representatives refuse to allow voters to vote on key issues so citizens continue to draft ballot measures to curb the influence of local leaders.   

It will be interesting to see how this growing "Clackastani Revolt" manifests itself in Lake Oswego given the upcoming fall election for 3 City Councilors and a Mayor.  

Clearly the recent announcements by the Mayor, City Councilor, and the departure of the City Manager shows that they are aware of the growing sentiment in the community.    

How this will all turn out will be up to the voters in the fall.  

Please notify all members, contacts, and friends. 

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

LO Continues to Draw Attention in the Blogs and On Line As the Community Debates

To All COLA LO Members,

This past week a number of blog entries and online comments to articles received substantial attention. 

The first describes the many issues facing the community Real LO Scandal.   At the same time several articles in the LO Review expressed mixed opinions about community issues Occupy Lake ,  Lake Actions Disgust, Worst Kept Secret, and NO Neighbor.   

All of these articles with a variety of views show the ongoing debate within the community regarding the administration of LO.  

As we head into an election cycle it will be interesting to see how these issues and the community debate evolves.   

Please notify all members, contacts, and friends.  

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Anti Light Rail Petition Group Receives $15K from Loren Parks

To All COLA LO Members,

The press reported this week that the anti light rail petition group in Clackamas County received $15K in cash contributions from Loren Parks.   

The Oregonian published an article on the details of the contribution and the connection to Lake Oswego Councilor Mary Olson.   

The article can be found at:  Loren Parks Donates.  The citizen driven Petition group submitted 12,000 signatures a couple weeks ago to have their measure on the November ballot.  

Several recent citizen  driven petitions have been very successful in clackamas county leading the Oregonian and several bloggers to describe the county in full revolt. 

It will be interesting to see how the ballot measure performs in November. 

Please notify all members, contacts, and friends.  
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