City officials are awaiting a decision by the county Registrar of Voters following a petition effort earlier this month by a who hope to force the city to revoke a development agreement between Albany officials and the University of California.
The City Council with the university in July. The university hopes to work with private companies to build a Whole Foods store and senior housing at .
The petition-organizing group, Keep Albany Local, said, via its Facebook page, that it collected more than 1,400 signatures within 10 days. The group thanked Occupy the Farm and the Albany Farm Alliance for help collecting the signatures: "we could not have done this without your support."
City Clerk Nicole Almaguer said Tuesday that the specific language of the petition is confidential, but that the group "basically asks for the City Council to reconsider the development agreement."
She said a synopsis of some of the language of the petition may be provided to council members if the issue comes back before them.
Almaguer said the city received the petition on Aug. 16 and counted 1,392 signatures with corresponding Albany addresses. She turned the petition over to the county the following day.
The county registrar will now determine how many of those signatures correspond with registered Albany voters; a total of 993 signatures, or 10 percent of the city's total registered voters as of the last election, will be required for verification.
As of Tuesday, the city was waiting to hear back from the county. Almaguer said, if the petition is verified, it is tentatively scheduled to return before the council in October.
If this happens, the council will be required to take action on the petition; council members could either decide to rescind the ordinance by their own action or submit it to the voters, said Almaguer.
If submitted to the voters, it would likely require a special election in the spring of 2013. (This would be up to the county registrar to schedule.)
A PDF handed out by one petition-collector is attached to this story above, following a PDF created by the university describing the project.
The city is also facing two lawsuits, both filed in August, related to the mixed-use project: one, filed by members of Albany Strollers & Rollers and Carbon Neutral Albany, related to mitigation measures such as cycling lanes, paths and solar panels; the other, filed by Albany resident Eric Larsen, related to the project's Environmental Impact Report.
Albany Patch readers posted hundreds of comments earlier this month on posts related to the referendum effort. Click the links below to see what your neighbors had to say, then let us know what you think about the effort in the comments below.
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Click the "Keep me posted" button below for an update when we publish future stories on the Whole Foods project. Learn about the proposed Whole Foods and senior housing development here.
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