Get signs and buttons

by carltown on February 10, 2011

Get these and put them on your car, your website, your door – you name it!

Car Sign – yellow

Car Sign – white

Button – yellow

Button – white

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The story of Heinz and Parks

by carltown on February 4, 2011

Email sent to Mayor and City Council on  July 23, 2010  

From Annie Vigileos

 I am a member of Protect Tualatin Parks; however, I am writing as an individual Tualatin citizen to urge you to consider referring the language of the Protect the Parks Charter Amendment Initiative at your upcoming Council meeting.

 As you are all aware, confusion and misunderstanding of the rules governing timing for the submission of the petition has caused our group to miss the deadline date necessary for this item to be included on the upcoming November 2010 ballot. 

 However upset we may be over this turn of events, the fact remains that we have gathered well over 2000 signatures of Tualatin voters who are very supportive of this initiative.  Every signature on our petition represents a resident who wants to be heard and wants to be part of the decision making process that determines the status of their parks and livability of their community.

 I can tell you first-hand that our small group has worked very hard over the past few months on this initiative effort.  We are the very definition of a grass-roots organization, and as parents and grandparents, employed and retired, homeowners and park lovers, long-time residents and relative newcomers to the area, Republican, Democrat or other, we are a representative cross-section of the people of Tualatin. 

 In the course of all of this, I am aware that our efforts have been a bit of a thorn in your collective sides.  Relative to this, bear with me while I relate a little story about my experience as Deputy City Clerk in Foster City, CA in the early 90’s.  I’d heard that just about every city has a Council gadfly, and Heinz was ours.  Heinz was an elderly gentleman who had a fair amount of time on his hands.  He attended each Council Meeting dutifully, filled out a speaker’s card each time, and took full advantage of his right to address the Council on any number of subjects – three minutes at a time.  As the City’s self-appointed watchdog, Heinz shared his observations, offered his opinions, suggested new directions, and alternately criticized or applauded various votes and decisions.  As soon as a meeting agenda was posted, he would be in the City Hall Courtyard pouring over each page, making copious notes.  As soon as the draft minutes of the meetings were available, he would be at our counter requesting a copy.  He caught every misspelling, advised us of our syntax errors, pointed out every punctuation gaffe, and reported same to the Council Members.  This went on for years.

 Needless to say, at the very mention of Heinz around City Hall, there was often a groan, a rolling of the eyes, and that smirk that signified the shared knowledge of what a giant pain Heinz could be – he was that thorn in our sides. 

 One day, word comes around that Heinz suffered a massive heart attack and did not survive.  It was sad news, but I am guessing many of us breathed a small secret sigh of relief – with no Heinz to watch our every move, maybe we could just get on with the business of running the city again.

 And then, a funny thing happened.  We all began to miss Heinz.  With Heinz gone, there were many subsequent Council meetings where no citizens attended at all.  It was quiet, and a little lonely.  I think many of us wondered if this new situation where nobody showed up wasn’t worse than when Heinz was punctually taking his seat at every meeting, faithfully holding us to a higher standard and making us all accountable.  He made us think, he made us double-check our facts, and triple-check our intentions.  I came to understand that Heinz, along with about 25,000 other residents, was why I came to work every day and tried my hardest to get it all right. 

 So, as this initiative process moves forward, you can reflect on what difficulties our group has presented to you.  You can dig in and stay your course.  However, you could also consider referring the initiative’s proposal so that it can be placed on the November ballot and working with us to find commonly acceptable language. 

 We are not so very different – I believe we all care about Tualatin’s past, present and future.  We may never totally agree on everything, but for the good of our City and with great consideration for all of its residents, we can work to establish mutual respect of our differing opinions, and to find ways to work together and learn from each other – I think Heinz would approve.

 Thank you for your consideration.

 Sincerely,

 Annie Vigileos

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Wildlife in Tualatin Parks

January 22, 2011

Protect Tualatin Park supporter Chris Markes captures beautiful wildlife images in Tualatin’s parks.

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Loss of City Parks

November 23, 2010

See: http://www.youtube.com/user/theaurorachannel#p/u/C5E9ECA0A7D27AC9/0/7agAnPL_MeU

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What if there were no city parks?

November 23, 2010
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Why a Traffic Bridge is a Bad Idea

October 15, 2010

Tualatin High School Student Video – Why the traffic bridge is a bad idea

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Achievements

October 15, 2010

Thus far, this inclusive group has: Eliminated a major intended source of funding for the ‘Bridge Over the Park’ (also called Tualatin Road Extension). Convinced the City to request withdrawal of the ‘Bridge Over the Park’ from Metro’s Regional Transportation Plan. Uncovered other potential non-park projects viewed as destructive to parkland. Filed a petition to [...]

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Parks Improve Property Values

October 14, 2010

From Greenbacks in the greenery, “Never forget the economic value of trees, parks and open spaces”, By CATHERINE BENOTTO: • Golden Gate Park in San Francisco is responsible for $500 million to $1 billion of the market value of real estate within walking distance of the park. This value generates $5 million to $10 million [...]

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“Oil Company Plans to Cut Forest Park Trees”

October 14, 2010

“Oil Company Plans to Cut Forest Park Trees” From The Oregonian 8/21/2010 p B1 Want this to happen in your Tualatin parks? Get involved! Contact us to find out how.

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Proofing and Submitting the Signatures for the Petition 08/26/2010

October 14, 2010

Conde checks signatures with Cathy, Kathy & George for hours this morning, even using magnifying glass! Picture outside city offices after receiving receipt THANKS TO YOU — WE DID IT. Today we delivered 352 signature sheets with more than 2,700 signatures ….. No, keep postToday we delivered 352 signature sheets with more than 2,700 signatures [...]

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