The people of Astoria love our river. Some enjoy views from their homes on the hill. Others walk, run or ride their bikes along the Riverwalk, taking it in. There's nothing like the fresh air on a sunny day.

But, I was not happy to read that the Astoria City Council has decided to subsidize the views for a few folks who live at Mill Pond ("Astoria abandons plans to sell Mill Pond property," The Astorian, July 2).

The story states that the city has paid more than $64,000 in homeowners association fees, and I understand the need to stop the bleeding. I appreciate council's desire not to spend our tax dollars in this manner. But, the same homeowners association cannot raise more than $11,500 to keep their unobstructed views? I cry foul.

If the city has not received interest in the lots, priced at $90,000 each, how about reducing the price? Maybe someone would be interested in purchasing a challenging lot if it were priced at, say, $45,000? Buildable land is at a premium in this city. This land is an asset. It should not be given away.

The City Council needs to be good stewards of our tax dollars. If no one makes an offer on the lots at a "garage sale" price then, I believe, a decommissioning of the lots could be studied. However, the homeowners association needs to cover the cost, at a minimum. The people of Astoria should not take a loss on this decision.

MARCIA FENSKE

Astoria

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