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City attorney gives bad advice

Posted: January 29, 2014 - 5:21pm

Mike Heimbuch hit the nail on the head when he questioned the wisdom of the city attorney advising the Homer City Council they could go against the will of the people. 

Loophole, n: a means of escape; especially:  an ambiguity or omission in the text through which the intent of a statute, contract, or obligation may be evaded. 

A couple of years ago the fees for water to multi-family residents were  raised to $45 per unit, plus the normal usage fees. At that time the city manager proudly announced that the then finance director had found a loophole that would allow it. 

By definition a loophole goes against the intent of the law or will of the public. Not much later a similar situation arose with maintaining ice skating on Beluga Lake. The administration and attorney ($30,000 in legal  fees later) found an irregularity that meant the city, after 30-plus years, didn’t need to keep ice skating open to the public. 

When we have a government run by loopholes, what do you expect? The city  attorney is simply giving the city the advice it wants to hear and they will defend that advice to the city’s last dollar. 

John Calhoun

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