by Ryan Burns
Last night, the Eureka City Council unanimously voted to adopt a harbor revitalization resolution presented by a community group, but only after it was determined that the document doesn't legally bind them to do anything.
Councilmember Linda Atkins said she was concerned about some of the big-ticket projects listed as goals in the resolution, including container shipping and the east-west rail proposal. She said studies have shown those goals to be unrealistic and expressed doubt about achieving public approval for them. But the rest of the council voiced support for the document, saying it showed vision and served to reaffirm their commitment to creating jobs.
After public comments and some discussion among the council, Atkins asked City Attorney Cyndy Day-Wilson whether the resolution would create any legal obligations for the city. The language of the document asks the council to resolve, among other things, to develop "within one year a cohesive and coordinated marketing plan" and to work with other agencies "to obtain funding/financing for infrastructure projects such as dock repairs and improvements; dredging [and] East-West rail ... ."
Day-Wilson said the resolution does not carry any legal weight. Atkins said that "in the spirit of cooperation" she would support the document. Thus was the council resolved.