citizensforsmartgrowth

Archive for March, 2011|Monthly archive page

Community Petition

In Dollar General Updates on March 10, 2011 at 6:04 PM

These Citizens call for the following:

1. That the Town of Palisade and the Town Board honor survey results completed by its citizens and include findings in future comprehensive plans.

2. That the Town of Palisade adopt a formal public hearing process with the town Planning Commission and the Town Board concerning changes to the comprehensive plan.

3. That the Town of Palisade Board make land use decisions based on the comprehensive plan.

4. That emergency meetings be used for intended purposes to preserve peace, health and safety of the public or special elections only and not to make decisions regarding use of town-owned property and/or changes to the comprehensive plan or land use.

5. That no Dollar General or any Box Store be approved in Palisade Town Center unless approved by a majority vote of the citizens of Palisade.

Sign the Petition here: Community Petition

Recent Findings on the “Emergency”

In Dollar General Updates on March 10, 2011 at 5:56 PM

This is perhaps the most revealing information about the recent sale of Town owned property discovered:

In the “Minutes of Meeting of the Palisade Board of Trustees February, 2 2011,” Tim Sarmo “notified the Board that this (Ordinance 2011-01, “Authorizing the Sale of Town Owned Property and Declaring an Emergency”) was an Emergency Ordinance and would need 6 of the 7 vote yes to have the Ordinance become effective immediately. Otherwise, if it was a minority vote, it would pass as a regular Ordinance and become effective 30 days after publication.”

The only Declaration of an Emergency was Tim Sarmo telling the board they needed majority vote to skirt the 30 days publication (due process).

Questions: What constitutes an emergency? Is there any legal precedent for considering the sale of Town owned property an “Emergency?”

We requested documents from the Town offices pertaining to emergency provisions (municipal code – Sec. 1-55. and 31-16-105). It appears that an emergency vote, waiving 30 day public notification, may only be used in cases of special election, public health, and public safety. Real estate deals don’t seem to fit in with that. Tim Sarmo and the Board of Trustees have stated publicly that they declared an emergency ordinance to push the deal through. It does not seem appropriate to skirt due process over the sale of town land. In fact, the sale of land at the “gateway of our community” should be most informed by democratic processes: public notice/comment, advisement from comprehensive plan and planning committee, respect for town administered survey results, etc.

There was no emergency and no “Declaration of an Emergency” other than our Town Administrator telling the Board they needed a majority vote to waive the public comment period.

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