Editorial: Back to bargaining | CraigDailyPress.com

Editorial: Back to bargaining

It's an issue that won't go away — stalled negotiations between the City of Craig and Moffat County Commission regarding a lease agreement at the Moffat County Public Safety Center.

Months of meetings have done little to resolve the issue, and the clock is ticking toward the current agreement expiring and the Craig Police Department being left in flux as to its permanent base of operations.

However, there's a new offer on the table from the commissioners, providing perhaps a sliver of hope that a solution may be reached sooner rather than later.

According to a guest column published in the Saturday Morning Press, the commissioners "have heard our community, and believe a compromise is in the best interest of everyone."

"To honor the citizens' intentions and to come to an agreement, Moffat County is willing to split the difference between the two offers and meet in the middle," according to the column, signed by commissioners Audrey Danner, Tom Mathers and Tom Gray.

Although the commission didn't mention a specific figure, logic would dictate they're talking a price in the neighborhood of $909,560.

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The commission has asked the city to pay a $1.083 million purchase price for the police department's space at the safety center. The city has countered with $736,120, a difference of $346,880.

Meeting in the middle means each side gives up $173,440.

The Editorial Board isn't advocating for the city to accept the county's offer.

At least not yet.

The devil, as they say, is always in the details, and the city is going to need many more specifics before agreeing to a proposal that's still quite vague. That can't happen unless the two sides talk.

However, Editorial Board members contend the county did extend an olive branch of sorts, and that's enough reason to get these two governing bodies back to the negotiating table.

At this point, it doesn't matter whether the current incarnation of the city council hammers out an agreement or if it's the post-April 5 municipal election version of the council.

The two sides never should have taken the delay they did until a deal had been reached, never should have walked away from the bargaining table.

That was a failing on both sides, which have been ineffective throughout the process.

But, that was yesterday, and the past is prologue.

It's time to write a new chapter today.

And now there's a new place to begin, a new figure to use in hopes of finally sorting out this mess.

Our View

The Moffat County Commission’s recent overture to the Craig City Council regarding space in the Moffat County Public Safety Center is a positive development in what have been failed negotiations thus far. It’s time the two sides get back to the bargaining table and finalize an agreement.