Next step for Skippers? Council to consider counter offer Friday morning

Citizens who packed the Edmonds City Council chambers Tuesday night to offer more comments on a proposed $1.1 million purchase of the vacant Skippers restaurant property learned that the seller, Cascade Bank, has made a counter offer to the city, which the council will consider in executive session at 9 a.m. Friday. The council will then hold a public meeting immediately following the executive session to take action on the counter offer.

Similar to last week, an array of citizens weighed in on the purchase, but with far less animosity than displayed a week earlier. There were two particularly notable comments.  One came from Edmonds-based European travel consultant and TV celebrity Rick Steves, who wrote a letter from Venice that was read aloud during the meeting. Noting how public space benefits communities across Europe, Steves wrote that “it would be a lost opportunity not to buy this property. ”

Edmonds real estate agent Ron Clyborne, meanwhile, read a “letter of concern” from the Edmonds Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors that questioned “the fiscal prudence of such a purchase given the knowledge of the city buget and economic conditions.” The letter requests that the council thoroughly research the pros and cons of purchasing the property before making a final decision.  “We question the merits of this proposal at this price and at this time,” the letter said.

More details on the council meeting will be added on Wednesday.

  1. Twittered by Fraley-Monillas: “It’s not the Council’s job to decide how to develop the site. It’s up to the citizens.”

    Amazing comment…only on the council for a few months but already knows how to pass the buck.

    On the contrary, if you’re voting for this purchase then you should have a clear idea what you envision the plot to be, how you’re going to fund the development, and how you’re going to make up for the lost revenue the land could generate that will be lost.

    Drive down 5th Avenue and look at all the empty storefronts…it is stunning.

  2. So they want to saddle us with debt, or a bond,;maybe get a grant that we are in no way qualified for a few years from now to retroactively pay back some of the acquisition funds; take money from the general fund (that is where FD1 money is people) or hold a giant bake sale to buy a piece of property that we don’t know the value of, to put something to be determined at a later date, upon.
    It is the city council’s job to listen to the people they represent. And the majority of people clearly do not support this purchase. Why then are we continuing to have meetings about this?
    And who can write a council agenda that in one day discuses spending $1.1 million on unappraised property the general populace does not want and a few items later explores a levy to balance the budget. That is unconscionable.

  3. @Michael 2 and Michael;

    I am convinced that the Horsemen really do not care what the people are saying. The public hearings were pro forma. Mark my words, the decision will be made on Friday to buy the property.

    I find it interesting that AFM says “it’s not the Council’s job to decide how to develop the site…” Well, if there is no plan, why spend the money? The Citizens have made their voice heard, we don’t want fiscal irresponsibility.

  4. There was no idication given during the remaining meeting after audience comments that any of the “Gang of Five” would be changing their mind as a result of the massive opposition to this purchase.

    Although there were people in the audience who remained to hear some of the later agenda items, and even after the agenda was approved by vote earlier, Council President Bernheim had the audacity to cut the four agenda items after agenda item 10. Council wasted so much time dealing with the irresponsible property purchase they didn’t want to take the time to deal with: item 11-budget review, item 12-public comment on budget cuts, item 13-council review of levy options, and item 14-council reports on committee meetings.

    God help us!

  5. I think Mr Steves is a pretty smart guy who has done well in the community as well as given back to it. I agree that public spaces are indeed wonderful for all the community to enjoy. BUT. What is to be done to make it a public space other than the city buying it? Where is the plan of that space? Where is the budget for that space? Do you think people will want to sit around the Skipper’s building and pass the time of day? Of course not. Even the Edmond’s pet contingent will find it unappealing. I cannot help to remind everyone once again of the atrocity sitting at Old Milltown. The city dumped a bunch of money for a public space and has done NOTHING with it. Do we never learn from our mistakes?

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