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Hamlet vote takes place soon

Election day has come and gone in some circles but residents of the Stafford Triangle still face an impending vote on the formation of a hamlet there.

Residents in the county land surrounded by Lake Oswego, Tualatin and West Linn can attend one of two town hall meetings at Athey Creek School, 2900 S.W. Borland Road, Nov. 16 at 6:30 p.m. and Nov 18 at 9 a.m. Those who participate will cast a vote on whether the area should organize as a hamlet, a forum that serves as an advisory group to county officials.

About 3,000 people in 650 homes make up the Stafford Basin. The hamlet targets the northern half of the basin, known as the Stafford Triangle, for representation in planning issues. The entire basin is likely to be included in Metro's Urban Growth Boundary in 2008, a move that would likely bring about development and change.

Stafford residents filed an application with Clackamas County to form a hamlet earlier this year as a means of having a voice in that change. They previously divided into two camps, with some supporting dense development and others favoring a more tempered approach to growth.

The two groups first filed separate applications to Clackamas County, spawning a mediation effort by the county. They ultimately set aside grievances and made a single application to become a hamlet.

Now, residents must vote to formally approve the structure and its bylaws and a slate of directors on a board to govern it. Stafford residents were given a green light to go forward by the Clackamas County Commission in August.

Those voting at the town hall meetings next week can cast one ballot per property or one ballot per business in the election. To receive ballots, voters must show proof of eligibility by providing the address of their residence or business. A driver's license, utility bill, mortgage bill, lease agreement, tax statement, property assessment or business license registration is acceptable.

In addition to approving the hamlet and its bylaws, voters will also be asked to select 10 board directors from a slate of 19 to run the Stafford Hamlet once formed.

Candidates for board positions include: Nick Hager, David Halseth, Charles Hoff, Mike Miller, Mike Stewart, Carol Yamada, Richard Schmidt, Molly Ellis, John Kuhl, Dave Adams, Dave Coles, Scott Flora, Steve White, Tanner Halton, Jerry T. Marshall, Rob Fallow, John English, Sally Quimby and Bill Markt.

For more information about the candidates, visit www.staffordhamlet.org.

Stafford residents can vote Nov. 16 and 18 to approve or oppose a hamlet formation of government and its related bylaws. A slate of 19 candidates is also running for 10 positions on a board of directors for the hamlet, if approved.

Election officials are organizing rides for those needing transportation at 503-460-5699. For more information about the Stafford Hamlet elections or the candidates, visit www.staffordhamlet.org.