The Oregonian's Tram Editorial Today Is Not True
The Oregonian’s assertion in the tram editorial today is simply not correct. The editors write, “But as city commissioners know, the city is legally and morally obligated -- despite the rise in price -- to build the tram.”
They should have sent someone to cover the tram meeting - or cover it better - because the city attorney put it differently. According to him the city is legally obligated to build the tram if the funds are there. It is not obligated to provide the missing funds, and so, if the funds are not there, the city is not obligated to build the tram. Presumably the commissioners have heard from him. Sam Adams was at the meeting as was the Mayor, so for the Oregonian to try and say the commissioners know something else, does not accurately reflect the city's position.
Ask yourself this: If the Oregonian’s claims were correct than why are we even having this debate? If the city is legally obligated to build the tram, there would be nothing to fight over. The city would be over the proverbial barrel. Of course OHSU’s lawyer feels the city is under that obligation, but he could be part of the general spin on this. The city attorney does not feel that way, so the editorial has chosen one legal opinion over another, siding with OHSU. By the way, the city attorney and the finance guy were the only ones at the meeting that seemed impressive to me. I bet he’s right and we’re being conned here. At the very least the Oregonian should have reported the truth, that there are two sides of this. Besides, all the indications seem to suggest the city attorney is right, including the fact that we are even having this discussion. When you throw in the assertion that the commissioners know the Oregonian is right on this, then we have enough here to call the editorial lacking in the area of the truth. Developers should help fill the gap in tram's finances