January, 27, 2006. Originally scheduled for Dec. 2. Presentation of the OSU master plan has been postponed and will now be presented on Jan. 27.
Time has been scheduled at this meeting for a designated spokesman to present concerns of property owners to the Regents.
The Board will VOTE on approval on this date! – not just discuss (Jan. 27)
In the OSU Press release regarding postponing the Master Plan presentation to the board of regents, it seems Mr. Schmidly has just come up with a brilliant idea: that of making sure the community and university family understands “the plan”.
Why didn’t he consider this before he blindsided the City, homeowners and citizens, forcing them to react to revenue loss, streets closings, and the threat of eminent domain. Why has he waited until now to discuss “the plan” with the Stillwater City Manager, Mayor, County commissioner and superintendent of schools?
Mr. Schmidly states that there have been 50 public forums regarding “the plan”. I would like to know how the “public” was informed of these meetings so that they could have attended these forums.
Regarding Stakeholders: Were ALL stakeholders present at the majority of meetings to decide on “the plan”? Were ALL stakeholders aware of “the plan” in its present form? Or did many of them believe “the plan” only included properties south of McElroy, until they read the Stillwater Newspress on Nov. 5, 2005?
Locating the athletic village to the north OR to the west, would keep it directly connected to the current Athletic facilities. Building to the West, would require relocation of research fields. The University is hesitant to move these. However, the University has no reservations about destroying homes north of the campus.
How will the athletic village add more jobs to the economy of Stillwater; more coaches? trainers? maintenance workers? Or what? Do more facilities = more jobs?
If we have $500 million of anticipated construction for academics and athletic facilities over the next decade, it seems to me that the proposed athletic village will consume most of that.
It is interesting that we are finally being told that Mr. Schmidly DOES think about academics, and we are now hearing that there are some facilities related to academia being considered. I do not see any of these academic facilities on the proposed master plan.
I have heard the offer made to the Stillwater schools concerning tax loss. Apparently, OSU offers to compensate Stillwater Schools for three years loss. (Will this be taken from the $400,000.00 that the City of Stillwater gives OSU from our use tax annually?) What about Vo-Tech and other tax loss?
As to the statement that most of the residents in “the plan” area will relocate in Stillwater, think again. Most renters are OSU students who will eventually be forced into University housing. Those living in their homes are talking of possible moves to towns close to their children, many are talking about moving outside the city to smaller communities, and some are planning to move out of the state. Most do not feel they can afford to relocate in Stillwater with the offer they are receiving in “fair market” price; and do not want to incur the increase in taxes due to “the plan”.
Somehow, the term “VOLUNTARY” used so often by OSU, is insulting to the property owner. How is it voluntary when a property owner is intimidated into selling his property for an undervalued price; and if he does not agree to the so-called â€œfair marketâ€ price, he is forced to accept it because of eminent domain? In no way is it voluntary as far as the property owners are concerned.
And the amazing thing to me is that those representing OSU Foundation, and other OSU entities, can actually say with a straight face that they have been “so open” in all of this when so many citizens have perceived it as covert and deceptive.