The daily Astorian. (Astoria, Or.) 1961-current, April 05, 2018, Page 3A, Image 22

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    3A
THE DAILY ASTORIAN • THURSDAY, APRIL 5, 2018
Sunset Empire looks to bond proposal
By R.J. MARX
The Daily Astorian
The Sunset Empire Park
and Recreation District is
readying a $15 million to $18
million bond proposal to go
before voters.
“Our timeline is for a
November election,” Skyler
Archibald, executive director
of the district, said Monday at
a board workshop. “We still
have several months — but
we do ourselves a disservice
if we wait too long to gather
community input, answer
questions that might come,
and also hopefully develop a
group that can generate a lot
of support.”
The district’s board of
directors met to determine
whether to bring an expansion
plan to the ballot, and if so,
how to finance it.
If placed on the ballot, the
bond would be voted on by
residents of the independent
taxing district, who include
most residents in the Seaside
School District, excluding
Cannon Beach and Gearhart.
Last May, district board
members discussed the pos-
sibility of expansion, either
funded through a bond or sys-
tem development charges —
the fees paid by builders to
the city for essential infra-
structure. Over the past three
years, the district has invested
about $60,000 to consultants
for building expansion.
The district’s base expan-
sion plan would add a sec-
ond level to the aquatic facil-
ity on Broadway in Seaside.
The plan would create a new
entrance, more efficient office
layout and a gym.
Two preschool rooms,
an administrative office,
lobby expansion, party room
and storage would also be
included.
Candidates: Challengers take on Bonamici
Continued from Page 1A
Challenging
Bonamici
in the Democratic primary
in May are Ricky Barajas, a
dental office manager, and
Michael Stansfield, a quality
control engineer and author.
“My platform pretty much
is investing in people,” Bara-
jas said. “I believe if we invest
in people in our communities,
and surround them with edu-
cation and health care, we can
achieve things together.”
Stansfield is part of the
Boycott, Divestment, Sanc-
tions movement opposing
Israeli settlements in Pales-
tinian territory and support-
ing boycotts of the country.
He took issue with Bonamici’s
support of the Israel Anti-Boy-
cott Act. The proposed legis-
lation would promote U.S.-Is-
raeli cooperation and oppose
boycotts of Israel organized by
foreign governments and inter-
national organizations. Some
have voiced concern the leg-
islation could stifle protest of
Israel.
“I don’t understand how
silencing the religious left is
going to help fight the reli-
gious right,” he said.
Three Republicans are
vying in the May primary.
George Griffith, a mechani-
cal design engineer who previ-
ously worked for Apple, Intel
Corp. and a NASA contrac-
tor, said he has more relevant
experience than Bonamici, a
lawyer. Espousing some lib-
Colin Murphey/The Daily Astorian
Preston Miller takes his seat at the candidate’s table in the
Astoria High School auditorium during an election forum.
ertarian viewpoints during
the forum, Griffith called out
Bonamici and other incum-
bents for taking money from
super PACs and corporations.
Preston Miller is a stu-
dent at Portland State Uni-
versity who served with the
Army during a peacetime tour
in South Korea and a combat
tour in Afghanistan.
“I love my country, and I
didn’t spend a year in Afghani-
stan dodging bullets and bombs
to see it torn apart by petty, par-
tisan politics, and from the pro-
gressives who like to blame
the entire world’s problems on
America,” Miller said.
John Verbeek is an insur-
ance and financial strategist
who said he lives in the “peo-
ple’s republic of Portland” — a
nod to the city’s liberal reputa-
tion — but filed in Bonamici’s
district for a better shot as a
Republican candidate. He has
made previous runs for seats in
the state House and Senate.
“The road map to freedom
is the U.S. Constitution,” he
said, also focusing on improv-
ing transportation and health
care.
Asked how they would
make schools safer, Verbeek
focused on working with law
enforcement, while Miller
called for arming teachers
and giving bonuses for con-
cealed carry permits. Griffith
disagreed with arming teach-
ers because of the potential
confusion for police in a crisis
situation.
Stansfield
called
for
improved security and intro-
ducing all religions and moral-
ity into schools. Barajas sup-
ported arming officers in
schools, but said there needs to
be more research on the issue
of gun violence.
Barajas called for taking
money from the military to
fund other programs, while
Stansfield said candidates
should publish their proposed
budgets and tax rates.
Miller called for end-
ing foreign aid to countries
unsupportive of the U.S.; Ver-
beek voiced his support for
the recent Republican tax
plan and said entitlement pro-
grams should be cut to cre-
ate revenue; and Griffith said
the focus needs to be on gov-
ernment waste, calling rais-
ing taxes or cutting services a
false choice. Both he and Ver-
beek called for cuts to the state
Public Employees Retirement
System.
Griffith was the only
Republican to support end-
ing the Electoral College,
while Miller and Verbeek said
it protects people in less pop-
ulous states. Miller called
for overturning the landmark
U.S. Supreme Court decision
in Citizens United v. Federal
Election Commission that pro-
tected political contributions
by corporations as free speech.
Griffith called on politicians to
stop taking money from super
PACs, while Verbeek pointed
to Bonamici as the most well-
heeled candidate.
Parking: ‘You can
see a definite change’
Continued from Page 1A
from the Promote Astoria
fund set aside for the com-
munity outreach officer
would be put toward a com-
prehensive parking study of
the territory Harris monitors.
The downtown associa-
tion, with the Public Works
Department, is in the mid-
dle of collecting data and
eventually hopes to facilitate
agreements between people
who have private parking
Follow us on
lots available downtown and
businesses that need parking
spots for employees.
In Bend, a study deter-
mined a single stall over the
course of a year carries an
economic impact of thou-
sands of dollars, Heath told
the council in March.
“That number will be
slightly different for us, but
we’re looking at a very valu-
able resource and using them
to the maximum capacity is
just wildly important.”
DailyAstorian.com
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