Kanab City Council – put the Citizen’s Initiative to a vote! We’re tired of the delays. Let Kanab citizens speak their mind!

I’ve been quiet on the Viresco Experimental Coal Gasification plant issue in the past year. There were editorials, expert opinions on both sides, but most importantly, citizens speaking up.

From the beginning, it seemed Guthrie and Viresco charmed the Kanab City Planning Commission. They made changes for this business specifically. Even to a casual observer, Kanab City wanted the coal gasification plant. Guthrie seemed connected to powers that made decisions.

I’m just confused – why? There is a new public safety facility, a new seriously-expensive recreational reservoir, and rodeo grounds that should be a tourist draw – all nearby. But the icing on the cake is that long-time citizens, business owners and newcomers all are expressing absolute disgust at it being considered here.

So many unanswered questions to the public, but you keep going forward – why? Listen to the people. Put it to a vote!

Viresco, to be built on a State Trust Lands lease, has never offered jobs, tax revenue, or intrinsic community value. It does have the potential to pollute clear skies, visuals, water and air. And here’s my favorite caveat, there’s no real promise to compensate us if their project doesn’t work. Where’s the payoff? Who thought this was a good idea?

Citizens who didn’t want Viresco took legal action, as well as gathering signatures for a public petition. They quickly got the citizen signature requirements to get the issue on the ballot concerning the plant to be built here. The Citizen’s Initiative is binding. But, the city council has delayed setting a date for the vote. What a surprise. Listen to the people! Put it to a vote.

The ignorant argument raised is whether everything that upsets people should go to a vote. Of course not! But this is a different issue – one that has the potential to affect tourism, our economy and our health! Do you think that people should never have an avenue for changing a governing body’s decision?

Why possibly would the city council want to delay the vote? Get it on the agenda, schedule it for a quick vote.Your posturing over this issue is comical – between a rock and a hard place? Guthrie, who has clout we don’t understand, ignores your appeals not to work on the property until the appeal decision is given. Many Kanab citizens think you don’t listen to them or respect them.

If I were a council person, at the end of the day, I’d rather be able to look my neighbors in the eye and be able to say, we listened to you.

Please schedule the vote quickly. The results could be in favor of this project, but at least you have given people their say.

This issue has demonstrated government ignoring public opinion. (By the way, when did you get the validated Citizens Initiative?) How sad. I hope you aren’t the same ones expressing concern about Washington right now. That would be hypocritical.

Put the Citizens Initiative to a vote!