Mayor Bob Foster has thrown his hat into the middle of a heated debate, promising to exercise his vetoing power to keep an ordinance banning “big-box” superstores from going back onto the ballot in February.
Foster, citing concerns over the estimated $500,000 that the special ballot would cost the city, wrote in a statement that, "Should the council vote to place the issue on the February ballot, I intend to exercise my veto authority."
The ordinance banning such stores was passed last year, but a Wal-Mart sponsored organization raised the required amount of signatures to challenge the ruling and re-vote. Fosters veto would potentially override their efforts.
"Lower prices come with high social and environmental costs and are only one part of a complex consumer and community equation," Foster said. "Unlike the interest groups involved in this issue, my obligation is to always work for the larger interest and to subordinate my personal feelings for the public good."
Foster also wrote that big-box superstores "are an inappropriate model for urban areas" and that he doesn't patronize them.