Residents' advocacy group to address Renton City Council
By TRACEY COMPTON
Renton Reporter Staff writer
September 7, 2012 · 1:53 PM
An advocacy group started by Renton residents will make a formal presentation to the Renton City Council on Monday and pitch for more citizen oversight on city projects.
Called the Renton Advocacy Coalition, the new group has 30 members and is growing, according to member Beth Asher. Monday the group will make a presentation on the downtown Cedar River library renovation and ask for representation on the design team. Asher feels that currently the design team has positions held by members of the Renton Library Advisory Board, who were "extremely vested in the Piazza library" idea, she said.
"We’re asking that the 78 percent majority of citizens that we represent be allowed seats on the board, and appointment to the design team," Asher wrote in an email. "We’ll be asking why 24 percent of the voting public should be given more weight than 78 percent of the voting public."
Asher is referring to the number of voters that chose the Cedar River location in the Aug. 7 election on site selection for a downtown Renton library.
Several of the members of the advocacy group were outspoken proponents of the current downtown library location over the Cedar River. So far the group recently added another member with commercial interior design expertise and been contacted about other issues concerning residents in the city.
"We’ve helped our first resident put in a public records request, and gotten two interested groups together to work on Highlands concerns," Asher said.
The Renton Advocacy Coalition plans to focus on more than just oversight of the downtown library renovation. They seek to be a sort of ombudsman and resource for people who want to address their concerns to City Council in a researched and formal way.The Renton City Council meeting will be 7 p.m. in City Council Chambers, 1055 South Grady Way.Contact Renton Reporter Staff writer Tracey Compton at firstname.lastname@example.org or 425-255-3484, ext. 5052.