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Citizen's View: When it comes to replacing Bowerman, compromise is not a one-way street

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Who could possibly argue against the article regarding the value of compromise put forth in last week’s Review by City Councilor Joe Buck (“With council on hiatus, Joe Buck reflects on value of compromise,” Aug. 20)?

Perhaps it might be someone with a memory lasting longer than the last election? Perhaps it might be someone who analyzes the article and realizes that its purpose is to prepare the city to accept a return to a council dominated by progressives, as it was under Judie Hammerstad and Jack Hoffman?

For those newcomers to the city or others who have been lulled into complacency over the past few years by a “go along to get along” council, there are issues that are pending though not emphasized at this time. Those issues are the Portland-to-Lake Oswego streetcar and the development of the Foothills neighborhood.

These are goals that the electorate fought in 2010 and 2012 after heated exchanges during council meetings in which there was no compromise in evidence. Fiscal conservatives were not listened to. It wasn’t until the citizens became aware that the streetcar was unnecessary, unwanted and unaffordable that things began to change.

The only reason for the streetcar was to service the Foothills development, which would make Lake Oswego an extension of Portland’s South Waterfront, forever altering the village nature of Lake Oswego. Many other costly and intrusive innovations had already been introduced in furtherance of Foothills. The expensive water and sewer systems were part of the preparation. The ever-present Sensitive Lands overlays were created as a tradeoff for Foothills, a flood plain that should be a part of Sensitive Lands, but that would make development impossible.

Obviously, there are enormous profits to be made with Foothills development. After the voting of fiscal conservatives stalled preparations, those issues went into hibernation. Even then there was talk that they would be back in 2016. The resignation of Karen Bowerman provided an opportunity for the schedule to be moved up a bit.

Looking over the candidates, only a couple can be considered fiscal conservatives. Several are extremely progressive. One was already an appointee by Jack Hoffman who was extremely denigrating of opponents during meetings.

There has been a tremendous amount of compromise by members of this City Council. The others could have frozen out the two progressives in the minority in the same manner as the conservatives in prior councils. They were not only heard, but also acceded to in many matters. Perhaps this was not the intention of the voters in 2010/2012, but it has been the nature of this council.

Using compromise in selecting a replacement councilor for Bowerman is against the wishes of the voters. The replacement should be someone like Karen, who would not compromise her promises to voters to remain fiscally conservative and aware of the public consciousness to be fair to all, not to be beneficial to a few at the expense of many.

Gary Gipson is a resident of Lake Oswego.