The city is barreling ahead with its white elephant “Lens” on the St. Pete Waterfront. The down payment for the project is $50 million with $5 million of that going straight to interest on the debt for the project. While the city dives into this project, citizens are organizing to stop the effort with another ballot referendum. This time, they are working to make the petition effort legally binding so it must appear on the ballot. They are looking for volunteers to gather signatures on the petition this Tuesday at the polls one election day. Those interested can come to an organizational meeting tonight on Snell Isle (details below).
The effort is being organized by the group “Stop the Lens” and already yard signs are popping up around the city to help their effort. The petition would place a referendum for the voters to amend the city ordinance in a specific way to stop the current lens effort. The ordinance is reproduced below but basically would terminate the agreement with Michael Maltzan’s architectural firm and require a the City Council to override any veto of that ordinance. This appears to be a legally foolproof plan, but does require thousands of signatures to get it on the ballot. If you want to pitch in and stop the lens, volunteer through the website or show up Thursday night (tonight) to get your package of petitions for signature for the polls next week!
You Are Cordially Invited
TO A VOLUNTEER APPRECIATION RALLY
AND PLANNING MEETING to STOP THE LENS!
Thursday, November 1st
at 6:00 PM
114 Raphael Blvd NE
St. Petersburg, FL 33704
Proposed Ordinance for Ballot to “Stop the Lens”.
THE CITY OF ST. PETERSBURG DOES ORDAIN
Section 1. Termination of Agreement. The City Council has determined that the agreement between the City and Michael Maltzan Architecture, Inc. should be terminated.
Section 2. Instructions to Mayor. The City Council directs the Mayor to direct the City’s Project Manager to terminate the agreement between the City of St. Petersburg and Michael Maltzan Architecture, Inc. as provided for in Section 14.1.1 of that agreement.
Section 3. Timeframe for Providing Notice. The City Council directs that the Notice of Termination as provided for in Section 14.1.1 of the agreement between the City of St. Petersburg and Michael Maltzan Architecture, Inc. be sent by the Project Manager within five (5) business days of the effective date of this ordinance.
Section 4. Conflict and severability. The provisions of this Ordinance shall be deemed severable. The unconstitutionality or invalidity of any word, sentence or portion of this ordinance shall not affect the validity of the remaining portions.
Section 5. Effective date. In the event that this ordinance is not vetoed by the Mayor in accordance with the City Charter, it shall become effective after the fifth business day after adoption unless the Mayor notifies the City Council through written notice filed with the City Clerk that the Mayor will not veto the ordinance, in which case the ordinance shall take effect immediately upon fililng such written notice with the City Clerk. In the event this ordinance is vetoed by the Mayor in accordance with the City Charter, it shall not become effective unless and until the City Council overrides the veto in accordance with the City Charter, in which case it shall become effective immediately upon a successful vote to override the veto.