Link to Owner Dr. Robert B. Pamplin Jr.



GUEST OPINION: The former mayor of Damascus and two former city councilors are asking that efforts to revive the defunct city government stop, pending further instruction from Clackamas County Circuit Court, Clackamas County, or the state.

We served as members of the Damascus City Council in 2016. At that time the citizens of Damascus clearly stated through the ballot box that they wanted to disincorporate the city. It wasn't even close.

Procedures were set in motion to transfer city assets to the county to pay off the city's obligations, use some for future road improvements in Damascus, and some to be returned to citizens.

We did our best to represent the citizens by respecting their decision.

Recently the Court of Appeals opened a door to the current political nonsense by remanding the disincorporation process back to the Circuit Court. We were each contacted by Jim De Young about forming a "new" Damascus City Council.

We each stated we thought the responsible way to respect both the legal process and the citizens is to wait for the Circuit Court to outline the actual disposition of the case and complex surrounding issues.

We have not changed our position.

Those desperate to revive the city leaped to restart the city council according to their own interpretation of the ruling, hire a manager/lawyer despite having no funds nor any real means of obtaining any, and in doing so try to convince our citizens that the city of Damascus really, truly, and legally exits: it doesn't.

We have not participated in any of these discussions or decisions. We believe that it is imperative to wait for further instruction from the Circuit Court, Clackamas County, or the state. To do anything else is not just irresponsible, it is potentially illegal, and also disrespectful to the majority of our citizens.

It has frightened some, irritated many, and once again put our community in the divisive, factious status we left behind three years ago.

The fictitious website created by De Young shows some of us as "Damascus City Councilors." This has been done without our knowledge or consent, and is in direct contradiction to our clearly stated desire to await the legal process.

The deceitfulness shown by this action casts great doubt on the integrity of those involved. We have asked that our names be removed.

We encourage De Young to end this charade, and we assure everyone that the three of us intend to do what we did three years ago — respect the will of the majority of Damascus citizens.

Diana Helm

Nancy Carpenter

Richard Klecker

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