Why is the upcoming election for Oak Harbor City Council Members so important to the citizens? Poor Council decisions with the Oak Harbor Clean Water Facility will cost the ratepayers.

The upcoming election for 4 Oak Harbor City Council members is going to be very  important to the citizens. In this post I will outline some of the issues that we currently  have with our planned septic treatment facility or Clean Water Facility to highlight why we have a City Council  that consistently makes the wrong choices for Oak Harbor and why many members of  the current Council need to be replaced with new blood in the Council.

We have a plan on the table by the current City Council that has not been thought  through and will cost the citizens of our community dearly.

1- Plan was rushed.
The current plan was rushed though the council, several recommendations were made to  take the time to do this right and all of those attempts were rebuffed by the Council.
There was a recommendation made to put the engineering of this sewage treatment plant  out for a competitive bid. The Council refused and instead chose an engineering firm  solely on the basis that it would take another 3 month to put this out for bid. They  chose the engineering firm that the city has used for the last several years and that has  consistently given the city the most expensive options.

2- Council acted in haste.
We have a sewage treatment plant that will cost the ratepayers in the city 92.5 million  dollars. Comparable sewage treatment plants in other communities have cost  substantially less but then again these other cities were not in haste to hire an  engineering firm and get the project moving at all costs. Most cities are concerned with  the eventual costs that are placed on the ratepayers, the citizens of the community.  The Oak Harbor Council has acted in haste and you are almost guaranteed to see a  sewage rate that will be up to 3 times what the residents are currently paying.

3- Funded solely on the backs of the ratepayers.
No effort has been made by the Council to look for grant funding for this facility.  Other communities have done their due diligence to look for and apply for grant funding that is available from the state and the federal government to help communities like ours keep the costs to the citizens down to acceptable levels. In Oak Harbor our City Council is relying solely upon the ratepayers to fund this costly endeavor  and no grant  funding has been researched and applied for up to this point. No wonder our septic  treatment rates will be increased 3 fold.

4- Alternate less costly locations were ignored.
Location location location. We have seen several options presented to the Council on  the location of the new sewage facility. Instead of looking at the least costly alternative   the Council has chosen to locate the facility on Pioneer Way directly in our business district  center. This will more than likely involve condemnation proceedings to purchase this  property and the cost to the ratepayers will certainly be high. Retail and Commercial property is some of  the most expensive property in our city and there were several other options including  buying currently for sale property out of the city center to build this plant on but it was  again hastily rejected by the Council.

We have a City Council that does not have the best interests of the citizens when making decisions that will directly effect those citizens. We need to look at other alternatives to our present Council. Anyone could do a better job than those that we have so I encourage you to look at a few of the new candidates for the Oak Harbor City Council. Please take the time to look at a few of these new candidates as replacements:

Sandi Peterson

Lucas Yonkman

Mike Piccone


1 Comment

  1. Don’t forget that fraidy cat Rick Almberg who walked out of the meeting when this was discussed and voted on. ;-)

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