[Vision2020] Question for Mr. Ament and Mr. Curley

Michael Curley curley at turbonet.com
Fri May 13 16:05:01 PDT 2005

Let me start a little backwards perhaps by assuming that NSA is not 
accredited.  If that is the case, then they are prohibited downtown.  
Because they are not a listed use--an "unaccredited college."

As you recall from the discussion last night, the city code says that 
if a "use" (meaning simply, what kind of work or activity is done in 
the building) is not specified as permitted, it is prohibited.  So, 
whatever NSA is that is not a college, they are prohibited.  

No one--not Mr. Dickison or Mr. Plaskon or anyone else on behalf of 
NSA came forward to say "we are not an educational institution--not a 
college."  In fact, you recall that Mr. Dickison quoted a letter he 
had previously written to Mr. Plaskon wherein Mr. D said:  "From the 
naure of New St. Andrews College, the most readily appliocable 
definition under the zoning code is "Institution, Educational" found 
at MCC 4-11-9(47):. . .

Also, you will remember that there was an exhibit introduced that 
showed that when a previous complaint was filed against New Saint 
Andrews for illegally operating in a residential area in violation of 
the zoning code, Mr. Plaskon himself determined that NSA was an 
educational institution--and NSA did not deny that it was.

So, that just wasn't an issue at the hearing and never has been 
during the course of the discussions on the current issue.

I believe that Mr. Dickison also indicated that NSA has been pursuing 
accreditation through the Transnational Association of Christian 
Colleges and Schools and that they have a sort of temporary or 
pending status in that process.  

Now, whether that would qualify them in an ultra-technical and wooden 
reading of the ordinance (as the appellants were accused of doing by 
Mr. Dickison), I don't know. For example, if NSA isn't an educational 
institution, are they prohibited everywhere in town--or would they 
get to apply for a conditional use permit in the areas where 
educational institutions are actually allowed?  I think that is the 
very type of area where Mr. Plaskon could, should, and would exercise 
his "reasonable discretion" (as the code allows in that circumstance) 
and find that, sure, NSA is covered by the educational institution 
definition even though they may not be "hypertechnically."

As to the other issue you raised, Mr. Dickison's time was not limited 
at all.  He was only limited by the chair to the same extent the 
chair said at the beginning of the hearing that it would limit 
everyone's comments--they had to be relevant.  The chair, the entire 
Board, and the City Attorney had all previously agreed that 
"intentions" were not an issue and were not relevant to the 
discussion.  Mr. Ament noted below that the chair on several 
occasions had to ask Mr. Dickison to refrain from  attacking the 
complainants personally and to stick to the law.  Mr. Dickison was in 
no way limited from making any legal argument he wanted to make.  He 
was never told there was a time limit.  He was asked to "sum up" when 
he stopped making legal arguments and continued to try to denigrate 
the individuals personally.

Thank you for your questions.  It was good to see you last night 
after so many "conversations" on this listserve.

Mike Curley

On 13 May 2005 at 14:58, Donovan Arnold wrote:

> When did New St. Andrews become accredited?
> Mr. Curley made his argument that NSA is violating the
> law because NSA is an "educational institution" as
> defined by city code. The city code does not allow
> "educational institutions" downtown or in
> commercialized zones. 
> The trouble with this argument is that NSA does not
> meet the legal city code definition of "educational
> institution". Because in order for any entity to do so
> it must be accredited by the state of Idaho or another
> national or regional accrediting agency as recognized
> by the state of Idaho through the Idaho State Board of
> Education. 
> Only one of the three board members caught this, and
> he voted "no".  
> In order for your argument that NSA is violating the
> law to be correct, it must be an "educational
> institution". 
> And for those that are a little slow, I am NOT
> defending or saying that I agree with NSA curriculum
> or religious beliefs. I am simply saying, that if the
> plaintiffs "claim" that this has nothing to do with
> NSA or Doug Wilson and is about the law, should that
> then not be their chief concern?
> Mr. Dickison's comments, although I strongly disagreed
> with much of the words and arguments he made, were
> limited. He was only given 1/2 the total time to speak
> as Mr. Curley. I would tend to think that in a fair
> case, both sides would be given time to speak their
> side of the issue.  
> So I ask again, Mr. Ament, and Mr. Curley, when did
> NSA become accredited and therefore an "educational
> institution" validating your claim that NSA is in
> violation of the law?
> Inquiring minds want to know. 
> Take Care,
> Donovan J Arnold
> --- aaron ament <citizenament at moscow.com> wrote:
> > Last night I attended a public hearing held by the
> > Moscow Board of Adjustment.  By a 2 to 1 vote, the
> > commissioners ruled that Zoning Commissioner Joel
> > Plaskon was wrong to say that New Saint Andrews use
> > of its downtown property was allowed under existing
> > code.  The board ruled for the complainants.
> > Joel Plaskon spoke to the relevant issues as did the
> > complainants attorney, Mike Curley.  Not so the
> > representative for New Saint Andrews, a Mr.
> > Dickenson[?].
> > He refused to address the issue and spoke instead of
> > the imagined motives of the complainants.  The
> > commission chairman asked the N.S.A. representative
> > more than once to refrain from attacking the
> > complainants and speak to the issue.
> > Joel Plaskon said that he used a "holistic" approach
> > to reach his decision.  A "holistic" look at the
> > actions of N.S.A. and its affiliated enterprises
> > tells me they have yet to find a law they are
> > willing to obey.
> > 
> >  "Citizen" Ament
> > 
> > 
> > 
> > 
> > 
> > 
> >   >
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