Saturday, January 22, 2005

O'Malley Introduces Council Study; Cadigan Continues to Press for Overturning Prior Council Resolutions; Your Help Needed!!

Councilor O'Malley and the Administration have worked out a political deal that allows the Mayor's override of Councilor O'Malley's previous legislation (which called for an independent study of the 4th Street & Montaño intersection) to stand. In return, the Mayor has pledged not to interfere with a new resolution, introduced by Councilor O'Malley last Wednesday, that will allow the City Council to fund and oversee an independent study of the intersection. That resolution will be voted on by the Council at its February 7 meeting. We encourage Coalition members to come to that meeting and speak on behalf of O'Malley's bill.

While we support the Councilor's new resolution, we also need Coalition members to speak out forcefully against Councilor Cadigan's pending resolution, which will be voted on by the Council at the February 23rd City Council meeting. That resolution would rescind all prior Council resolutions concerning Montaño. If these prior resolutions are rescinded, the current injunction preventing the city from re-striping most of the Montaño corridor could immediately be lifted, and the Mayor would move to re-stripe the corridor to four lanes right away. The effect of this combination of events would mean that the independent study of the intersection contemplated by Councilor O'Malley's current legislation, would be conducted in the context of a four-lane Montaño corridor. Since it is almost inconceivable that anyone studying the intersection would recommend "rolling back" the corridor to 2 lanes, this would effectively mean that the options coming out of the study would all include a four-lane corridor. And while our Coalition does not take the position that Montaño should never be a four-lane corridor, it is our position that the study should be conducted while Montaño is a two-lane facility. Only in this context may the analysis include ALL options (two-lane and four-lane) that might be consistent with our Community Visioning Report. As a community, we will then be in a position to evaluate which option best serves our entire city. To effectively foreclose any of the options by prematurely re-striping the corridor before the study is conducted would be a big mistake.

Please take the time to contact all of the members of the City Council and encourage them to allow us to identify ALL possible options before Montaño is re-striped. We all want the study to be done quickly (but thoroughly) and to include the elements of our Community Visioning Report. Then we can decide how best to utilize the Montaño corridor. Urge them to vote AGAINST Councilor Cadigan's resolution on February 23.