West Linn Tidings: Willamette Falls Heritage Area group considers new site for multicultural center
“Willamette Falls heritage area group considers new site for multicultural center”
West Linn Tidings- September 12th 2020 by Holly Bartholomew
After the relationship between the Willamette Falls and Landings Heritage Area Coalition (WFLHAC) and the majority of the West Linn City Council seemed to sour last month over a disputed agreement to turn West Linn’s former City Hall building into a multicultural center, the coalition is now considering alternative sites.WFLHAC Executive Director Siobhan Taylor said the coalition would prefer to proceed with the original plans, but that if the city doesn’t stick to its word WFLHAC would plan the center elsewhere. She added that the coalition did not want to waste years of planning and thousands of dollars in due diligence work by abandoning the old City Hall as a location.
“It’s a sad, sad statement about community and governmental overreach by a few members of the City Council in West Linn. We have tremendous support from Mayor (Russ) Axelrod; he has been stellar in understanding that West Linn needs a multicultural center,” Taylor said. “(Councilor) Jules (Walters) has been absolutely outstanding in her support of our efforts and publicly stated she did not condone what Councilors (Teri) Cummings, (Bill) Relyea and (Rich) Sakelik proceeded to do at the last meeting with us.”
At the council’s most recent meeting Sept. 8, Sakelik asked city attorneys Tim Ramis and Bill Monahan to provide an analysis of the letter of commitment as clarification for what he called misinformation about the situation.
“I’d like the public to understand what clearly is the position, what the LOC really is, because it is a legal document that is still in limbo,” Sakelik said.