Evan Holmes

(candidate for 2003 Moscow City Council (4 year seat))

1. Do you believe the bequest from the Hamilton estate was spent wisely in the construction and maintenance of the new gym? If not, why not—and how would you avoid a similar problem in the future?
First of all, in my opinion, the new recreation facility will be an asset to the city and will provide some long overdue relief to some of the indoor recreation shortcomings of Moscow. Second, I donıt believe this is the way that Bob Hamilton might have thought the money would be spent but he may have given a guarded sort of approval in the long run. Third, my own seat-of-the-pants cost vs. benefit analysis suggests that there are some struggles ahead. Fourth, I think the City mitigated some of the concerns I hint about in my second and third comments by retaining and investing a significant chunk of the bequest to allow the interest to recover some of the costs.

Apparently the process used that led to this outcome could have been better. The goals that defined the use of the money were workable, although a bit vague. However, the objectives were too narrowly focused and not subject to formative evaluation or summative evaluation.

During the past few years the residents of Moscow, with a greater number of voices and with increasingly overt methods, have been asking the City Council to create, to discover or to improve ways to make them part of the decision-making machine. In the past, some Council members suggested obtaining advisory votes from the electorate on certain issues; this is another that would have benefitted from that.

2. As a Council member, what would be your questions, concerns, and requirements if you were asked to vote for a zoning variance that would allow a large business (employing 100 workers) to be built on the outskirts of Moscow? Use that example to define your vision of economic growth for Moscow.
Questions? Oh, yes, I'd have a few ......... hundred! What type of business - manufacturing, retail, agriculture, hi-tech? What resources will it require? Is it locally-owned, or is it a national corporation? What will its shipping and transportation needs be? Also, do you really mean variance or are you thinking re-zone?
The question is good because City Council has faced and will face these types of decisions; Wal-Mart is one example. What do you think will happen when the ³Hooters² franchise decides to open a restaurant in this area?
Ideally we would like to dictate the types, locations, risks, wages, ownership and practices of new business but our system does not impose a high level of control over individual property owners or seek to discourage private enterprise. In my ideal economic growth scenario the public must feel that the City Council is diligently protecting and even improving the universally recognized quality-of-life assets of the community. My vision of the economic growth scenario and the presumed population growth that accompanies it includes a complementary process that would allow the residents to predetermine the limits of acceptable change. We are shifting from a time when we could confidently expect to mitigate the negative aspects of growth and development as they arise, to a time where we must anticipate and set limits to them.

3. Are you concerned with the continuing depletion of the Grande Ronde aquifer, and if you are, what specific steps would you want the city to take to conserve that water source?
This is a great example of the need to anticipate change caused by growth and development and to determine the acceptable limits.
I have long supported a tiered billing system for water use and I fully support the cityıs involvement in PBAC. As a council member I would want to support efforts to gather more definitive hydrological and geological information about the Grande Ronde and the Wampum aquifers. Many residents already conserve water via household management, xeriscaping, etc. and I want to the City to further encourage these practices. I would like the residential construction process to offer incentives for including or adding graywater systems to homes for lawn and garden irrigation and I will support any efforts by our local representatives to alter the State laws that currently prevent use of such systems.
On a simpler level, as a taxpayer, resident and neighbor, I do not want to brand people with green lawns as outlaws and I want this issue to be resolved without contentious litigation.

4. Should Moscow encourage, and begin planning now for, the creation of a new route for Highway 95 that bypasses the city?
The Transportation Committee under the direction of the Planning and Zoning Commission is already engaged in this task. And rightfully so. The bypass is an essential component of planning for our city regardless of whether youıd prefer the council to emphasize growth&development initiatives or quality-of-life initiatives.

5. As a Council member, how would you use email, websites, or any other communication tools to inform Moscow residents about city programs or to gather input from those residents?
I'd use them in all the typical ways to remain accessible and to output information. There has been an increase in the number of various citizens' organizations, so I see a great opportunity to solicit 'positions' and 'preferred alternatives' from these groups and bring that information to council meetings. I would like to encourage the formation of neighborhood organizations to further stimulate the governing process. In the past I have posted to V2020 written analysis of city issues and explanations of decisions made by various governing bodies. I'll do this some more, if elected. Of course, the Daily News is often a willing accomplice in the scheme to disseminate information and I hope to make use of that outlet, also.

6. Please include biographical information about yourself and any other message or contact information you want to share with Moscow voters.
If you havenıt already crossed paths with me or my wife you may have come close. Nancy has owned/operated Beginning With Music (early childhood music and movement classes) for seven years, is the lead instructor of the Moscow School Districtıs new K+ program, and president of the Board for Palouse Suzuki Strings. Since 1990, my business, HomeWork, has focused on residential remodeling, construction, maintenance and property management. Together Nancy and I own Interpretive Media Productions which offers consulting, marketing, evaluation, planning, writing and design services for a wide range of interpretive endeavors. Recently we wrote an interpretive plan with design concepts for Moscowıs Berman Creekside Park. I serve on Moscowıs Zoning Board of Adjustment and for many years Iıve been a regular presence at a variety of council, committee and community meetings. Iım a former Board member for the Moscow Food Cooperative. As I write this, Emily (7th grade at MJHS) periodically calls for help with her math homework and Colin (5th grader at Lena Whitmore) wants to demonstrate his latest Bionicle creation. So if you want more information or wish to discuss the election or would like to tell me what you expect from your local government please contact me at 883-4918; Box 8981 or

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