City Council may weigh in on UN initiative
Marysville may be the first city in Ohio to take a stand against a movement coming from the United Nations.
Marysville City Council public affairs committee chair Deborah Groat said they are looking into what is known as Agenda 21.
"Individual states are addressing it but to our knowledge, in the state of Ohio, it hasn't been addressed in other cities," Groat said.
According to Groat, Agenda 21 promotes sustainable development but it is the method of obtaining sustainability that comes into question.
The movement came out of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development held in Brazil in 1992.
The program was adopted by 178 governments, including the United States. The number 21 refers to an agenda for the 21st century.
Those against Agenda 21 claim it takes away private property rights of American citizens by imposing environmental considerations in the name of sustainability.
"It's a highly politically charged issue," Groat said. "Under the Agenda 21 agreement category, the people who put that in effect and oversee that are not elected officials."
Information on the sebsite WhatisAgenda21.net states, "Sustainablists insist that every societal decision be based on environmental impact, focusing on three components: global land use, global education, and global population control and reduction."
Marysville Councilman Dan Fogt brought Agenda 21 to the attention of city council, asking that a resolution against the agreement be written for the city.
"We are working on ... offering a resolution that council would then pass or not pass to say that we are (as a city) against Agenda 21," Groat said. "We haven't decided through the public affairs committee whether we're even going to make a resolution."
A resolution lacks power, according to Groat, but would add a city's voice to many others.
Fogt is gathering research and developing a presentation for council.
"Hopefully, within a month, we can present to council Power Point or some kind of more professional looking piece," Groat said.
The public affairs committee meeting at 6 p.m. Oct. 22 in council chambers is open to the public.
"We'll decide, are we going to present a resolution of support or a resolution of non-support or choose, as a public affairs committee, not to touch it," Groat said.
Mayor John Gore thanked Groat and the public affairs committee for taking on the Agenda 21 issue.
Groat said she wants to hear all sides of the issue and she wants to hear from the public as well.
"I would appreciate it if the public would educate themselves both of the pros and cons," she said.
There are two questions Groat would like to answer through the research process: "Is it up to city government to even make a statement about how it feels about an Agenda 21 coming out of the United Nations? Should a city government even consider it?"