Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Community Bill of Rights

Yes! Magazine reports on a proposition on the ballot in Spokane. Although it didn't win, it garnered approximately 25 percent of the vote—despite the fact that opponents of the proposal (developers, the local Chamber of Commerce, and the Spokane Homebuilders) outspent supporters by more than four to one.

The proposition was unique in that it would have changed the city constitution to give neighborhoods the ability to make legally binding decisions about development.

...despite intense opposition from business interests, a coalition of residents succeeded in bringing an innovative “Community Bill of Rights” to the ballot. Proposition 4 would have amended the city’s Home Rule Charter (akin to a local constitution) to recognize nine basic rights, ranging from the right of the environment to exist and flourish to the rights of residents to have a locally based economy and to determine the future of their neighborhoods.

You can read the entire article at Yes! Magazine.