I learned today from non-city sources that behind the scenes discussions have taken place between City of Troutdale officials, developers, and Multnomah County that propose the use of City of Troutdale taxpayer funds as a "sweetener" in order to keep alive the proposed new Multnomah County Library site at the "Marino Block" in downtown Troutdale. The amount of the requested taxpayer-provided "sweetener" was estimated at $800k-$1 million.by several non-city sources I talked to. I was able to confirm that private discussions did take place earlier this week after talking on the phone with Troutdale City Administrator John Anderson late this afternoon. There is a city council executive session scheduled for next week. The details of the secret discussions will then be discussed. .
This is disturbing on many levels. Any secret discussions regarding the use of Troutdale tax dollars without the knowledge or consent of the city council are unacceptable and inappropriate. The city isn't the one responsible for libraries. Multnomah County is. We have no business providing tax dollars toward the siting of a Multnomah County library. And the city should not be involved in influencing or determining library site selection winners and losers via tax dollar "sweeteners" to one developer. It goes without saying that the city CANNOT afford to saddle itself with additional debt of $800k-$1 million dollars at this time.
I have two goals for the executive session next week- one, to kill the deal. Two- to get everyone to agree to make the actual details of the discussions public knowledge. There's no room in Troutdale for this kind of back door dealing.