By now many of you will have read the posts from Lauren Padgett entitled “The Future of Bonney Lake Parks, Parts I & II”. Part III of her article will soon be released. To date neither Part I nor Part II has mentioned anything about the Arts and Cultural Heritage Element of the Comprehensive Plan that was approved by the City Council in December 2011.
To review the process, during 2009 a member of the Bonney Lake Planning Commission suggested to the City Council that it would be beneficial to the city to add a Historic Preservation Element to the Comprehensive Plan. The Council agreed and directed staff to put something together for the Planning Commission to review. However, the work was continually postponed. Over the next two years and two additional appearances before the city council, each time the council reconfirmed their desire to move an historic element to the comprehensive plan forward.
Finally, in the fall of 2011 the Planning Commission received a draft copy to work on, but staff had changed the focus from historic preservation to a Cultural Resources Plan with the emphasis on arts and cultural heritage. The Commission only had a few weeks before it had to be voted on and a recommendation made to the council. The Planning Commission did an excellent job, beat their short fused deadline and provided a recommendation to the Council in November 2011. It was approved by the full Council during December 2011. An important recommendation of the Planning Commission was for the Mayor and City Council to create an Arts/Heritage Commission of concerned community volunteers and initiate an inventory of historic and community assets and to make recommendations to the Council on what our City needs.
As I said, that was at year end 2011. It’s now almost mid-year 2012 and very little advertising has taken place to find volunteers for an Arts & Cultural Heritage Commission. Recently we’ve heard rumors that some on the Council may like to have the Planning Commission redo the work that they did last year and may even consider eliminating this Element from the Comprehensive Plan. In other words, they want to kill it before it’s ever had an opportunity to take seed.
I’m making this appeal to any of you out there that are interested in the Arts, Culture, or History of Bonney Lake to join us at the Justice Center, 9002 Main Street E, Bonney Lake, at 6:00 pm on Monday night, May 7th to let the Mayor, Council and Bonney Lake Staff know that YES we are interested in these elements, that YES we want them to continue to be included in the Comprehensive Plan, and YES we want them to be considered as part of the overall plans for Parks in Bonney Lake for 2012 and into the future.
If you have an abiding interest in Arts, Culture, History and would be interested in applying for a position on an Arts & Cultural Heritage Commission, please print the attached file and mail it back to the Mayor of Bonney Lake and the city council at P.O. Box 7380, Bonney Lake, WA 98391-0944, or you can email them at firstname.lastname@example.org, and email@example.com.
Thanks for your time and consideration.