Public debate on the details of what, if anything, should be part of the city hall redevelopment project?
Sure. As soon as there are some details about which to debate.
The misinformation and, dare we call it, disinformation already flying around the rumor mill about the proposal should surprise no one; the trenches are dug and the battle for public opinion has begun.
We've gotten phone calls demanding to know if it's true there will be a "gated community" there -- we haven't heard a thing about that -- and people have already started to pick apart the off-the-cuff name -- "Marina District" -- City Manager Mike Will came up with for convenience in talking about the project with reporters.
Anyone expecting a quiet, sober discussion can already expect to be disappointed.
Fact is, a developer has floated a proposal and, because there has to be something to draw on a chart, the proposal includes some what-ifs about restaurants, retail, recreation and residences. The Sandusky Sailing Club has already been promised it won't be hurt and, if anything, there will be more public access to the waterfront, not less.
This newspaper has already stated its preference for tax-generating properties on that prime piece of waterfront real estate -- with public access, of course -- so that's our two cents. Your two cents has a place on this page if you care to toss it in, and there are any number of other venues for your views as well, so don't feel left out of the debate.
But the point is, the city and the developer had to come up with something to get the discussion started, and the chart with the art is just that. Will has already said the chart's on paper, not stone, so there's no need to feel this is being shoved down anybody's throat.
The city commissioners have done the job you've elected them to do which is to run the city and seek ways to improve it. At this point the only action they've taken is to direct the city manager to negotiate a proposal to be considered for a development on city hall property. Let him do so.
Until then any debate, arguments, and actions taken by anyone else are simple speculation.
So sit tight. Everyone is doing his or her job.