Measure D powers council debate |

Measure D powers council debate

Measure D, the property rights initiative on the ballot Nov. 5, headlined the Grass Valley City Council candidates’ forum Thursday, along with traffic and other growth-related issues.

Patti Ingram, the city’s vice-mayor in her first term in office, and Gerard Tassone, a 14-year city councilman, are running for re-election.

Their challengers are Lisa Swarthout, chairwoman of the city’s Planning Commission; Thomas Reagan, a member of the city’s Parks and Recreation Commission; and Newell Taylor, a newcomer to city politics.

Mike Thornton of community radio station KVMR-FM moderated the two-hour forum at Center for the Arts in Grass Valley.

Growth was a theme throughout the evening.

Swarthout, Tassone and Taylor said they opposed Measure D. If passed, the measure would allow a process which would reimburse county property owners who claim the value of their property has been devalued because of county regulations.

The Grass Valley City Council on Oct. 8 voted 3-1-1 on a resolution to oppose Measure D, with Ingram voting against it. Tassone, Mayor Linda Stevens and City Councilman Steve Enos voted for the resolution. Councilwoman DeVere Mautino abstained.

(On Tuesday, the Nevada City City Council unanimously voted against Measure D.)

Ingram, who has recently voiced her support for Measure D, declined to give her position on it at the forum. She voted “no,” she said, because she was against the city taking a position.

Reagan, who said he supports Measure D, agreed with Ingram’s position.

Grass Valley could annex as many as four large properties, including 175 acres at the former Bear River Mill site and another 760 acres at North Star, south of Grass Valley.

Traffic is the biggest challenge the city will face in the next couple of years as the community grows, the candidates agreed, all of whom stressed the importance of careful planning. The public’s input also is very important, they said.

Paul Emery of KVMR-FM, Beth Moore Haines of FCAT TV and Tracy Corris of KNCO radio posed questions to the five candidates, who sat at a table on a stage. About 20 people attended the live broadcast.

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