WAKE WATCH

wakecitizens@gmail.com
919-771-3736

For Immediate Release
Contact: Joey Stansbury
June 26, 2017

LOTS OF TALK BY MAYOR MCFARLANE AND THE
RALEIGH CITY COUNCIL ON CITIZEN ENGAGEMENT.
HAVING A PUBLIC VOTE ON REPLACING RALEIGH’S CITY
HALL WOULD PROVE THEIR SINCERITY.

Raleigh, NC - Raleigh’s City Hall dates to 1983. Now Raleigh city leaders want to tear down
city hall and replace it and the former Raleigh Police Headquarters with a new Civic Campus.
Initial estimates put that cost at $165,189,000. Raleigh has moved forward with hiring a firm to
design a master plan.

Smaller bond packages that the Raleigh City Council put before voters:

2014 publicly approved Parks & Greenway Bond: $91,775,000
2007 publicly approved Parks & Greenway Bond: $88,600,000
2003 publicly approved Parks and Greenways Bond: $49.2 million
2011 publicly approved Transportation and Housing Bond: $56 million

Downtown Raleigh projects that have eluded public votes:

Raleigh Convention Center: $443.4 million (includes interest payments)
Raleigh City Plaza: $15.8 million (includes interest payments)
Raleigh City Plaza renovations: $2 million
Fayetteville Street opening: $21.4 million (includes interest payments)
Red Hat Amphitheater: $2.1 million (includes interest payments)
Moore Square: $12.6 million (does not include interest payments)
Exchange and Market Plazas: $1.2 million
Dix Park land purchase $58 million (includes interest payments)

Total: $553 million in downtown Raleigh projects financed without voter approval.

Raleigh city leaders have previously indicated their support for a public vote on downtown
Raleigh projects but have failed to act on them:

McFarlane has defended the city's work on the project but said she's willing to rethink the
proposal and possibly hold a referendum to seek public guidance. "That specific building is
probably dead," she said Tuesday, referring to the earlier design.

Mayoral candidate Nancy McFarlane commenting on Raleigh’s proposed public safety center
building.

(Wake Watch is a Wake Citizens Coalition project.)
WAKE WATCH
wakecitizens@gmail.com
919-771-3736

Raleigh News & Observer – September 21, 2011
http://www.newsobserver.com/2011/09/21/1505012/mayoral-candidates-find-common.html
(Emphasis added)

Once the two sides settle on a price for the land, Raleigh voters should get the final say
on a potential sale, said City Councilwoman Mary-Ann Baldwin, a park supporter.

The city must balance a host of projects, including a 911 center proposed as the first
phase of a public safety facility.

"Because of the number of priorities we now have, going to the voters for approval would
be the smartest way," Baldwin said. "It would be a true endorsement of this as a priority."

Raleigh News & Observer – February 13, 2012
http://www.newsobserver.com/2012/02/13/1851093/park-backers-see-hope.html
(Emphasis added)

Raleigh City Councilman David Cox is currently the only city council member who has
publicly announced his support for a public vote on this project:

David Cox I support a public vote
Like · Reply · June 23 at 11:55am
https://www.facebook.com/groups/RaleighDistrictB/permalink/1725947070767408/

Wake Watch Editor Joey Stansbury stated:

“This year the number one issue facing the City of Raleigh has been the Citizen Advisory
Councils and the broader question of how to effectively engage Raleigh’s citizens. However
annually we see the Raleigh City Council bypass citizen engagement as it relates to costly
downtown projects. In recent years Raleigh has spent over $550 million dollars on lavish
downtown Raleigh projects with no voter input. The Raleigh Civic Campus would add $165
million to that figure

In 2011 Mayor McFarlane even publicly stated the public safety center renovation project
should have a public vote. The Raleigh City Hall makeover is essentially the same project. We
hope she will not back off her previous commitment.

If the Raleigh City Council is truly sincere in its commitment to citizen engagement they will put
this proposal on the ballot for voter approval. Nothing short of this will suffice.”

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(Wake Watch is a Wake Citizens Coalition project.)