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SG-W:/ Fwd: Parklands Acquisition Millage - Monday night Council action



Sorry if this it received in duplicate:

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Friends,

We're knocking ourselves out in the noble fight to get the Parklands
Acquisition Millage on the ballot so the City can expand and complete the
park system we know and love. Vital natural areas and park connections are
at stake. We are now deciding if they will be condos or parks. My thanks
to everyone who is working on the petition drive. You are my idea of
community heroes.

Our petition drive is getting a lot of attention in the press and from our
City Council representatives. However, we cannot know if it will get the
number of signatures required to get our issue on the ballot. But we have
also been pursuing doing this via Council action.  After extensive
lobbying, I think we are ONE Council member's vote away from getting the
Parklands Acquistion Millage on the ballot via Council passage TONIGHT.  
If we succeed, we call off the petition drive. I'll buy the first round at
the bar if we win.

But right now we do NOT have that last critical vote. Here's how you can
help get it before tonight's City Council vote on the issue.

1.  Tell Mayor Ingrid Sheldon - a voting Council member - that citizens
deserve the chance to vote in November on whether to tax themselves to buy
park land. This is a simple issue of fairness.  But after meeting with her
last night, I'd say that only *substantial* public support will move her
to vote yes. Call her office (994-2766) and leave a message with your
opinion. This is a 30 second investment that may save hundreds of
volunteer petition circulator hours.

2.  City Council meets tonight at 7:30 to debate the Parklands Acquisition
Millage.  Several speakers will explain why Council should put it on the
November ballot. Council will listen to our message, but they are probably
more interested in gauging the level of public support - or lack of it. If
we can get 50 to 100 people to the meeting we will provide a convincing
"live" statement of what our petition drive amply demonstrates:  great
cities have great parks, and the people of Ann Arbor want to have great
parks.

One of our speakers will ask the audience to stand in support of the
Millage.  We may win or lose the Council vote based on how many people are
standing. If you are pressed for time, come to the Council meeting at 7:45
and leave after "The Stand for Parks" which should take place sometime
between then and 8:15. The public hearing and council debate will continue
beyond this point. City Council chambers are on the second floor of City
Hall at 5th and Huron.

If we win the Council vote, this will be the critical step to saving open
space and building a great park system over the next decade. If we lose,
we are relying on a petition drive that has only a 50-50 chance of success
by the August 3rd deadline.

Please call the Mayor and come out to the Council meeting. Invite a
friend. This is what it means to be part of a democracy and a community.

Feel free to forward this message to others who share our concerns. Give 
me a call if you have any questions or concerns.

Thanks,

Doug Cowherd
662-5205


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