[Vision2020] Moscow Boarding Houses

Tom Hansen thansen at moscow.com
Tue Sep 4 05:43:13 PDT 2007

In response to Roy Atwood's recent press release concerning this evening's
consideration by the Moscow City Council of an amendment to the city zoning
code as it relates to boarding houses, Joan Opyr submitted the following
letter to the editor of the Moscow-Pullman Daily News.


Dear Editor:

Thanks to Tara Roberts for her interesting and informative piece about
proposed revisions to Moscow's boarding house ordinance. 

I was especially taken by Dr. Roy Atwood's admission that he has a number of
illegal boarders in his home. Even better was his argument that he should be
allowed to break the law in order to make his mortgage payments. If I bought
a large home in an expensive neighborhood, thinking I'd be able to pay for
it by running a gambling den in my rec room, how sympathetic should I expect
the city to be? 

Atwood complains about discriminatory and selective enforcement. This is
disingenuous. What he and other boarding house owners are demanding is a
discriminatory and selective exemption. The principle at stake here is very
simple: equality before the law. If your income is small and your mortgage
is large, you need to get a better job or buy a smaller house. The city is
not obliged to let you run amok to make ends meet. 

Roy Atwood, the President of New St. Andrews, dares the City of Moscow to
enforce its own laws. So do I.

Joan Opyr


A memo from Anne Clapperton to the Boarding House Review Committee, Subject:
Options for Consideration, dated May 18, 2007, is available in PDF format

Tara Roberts' article "Moscow Commission Gives Nod to Boarding House
Changes" is available in PDF format at:

Roy Atwood's press release, as presented in Dale Courtney's blog, is
available in PDF format at:


Seeya round town, Moscow.

Tom Hansen
Moscow, Idaho

"I'll just speak for our church, in Christ Church.  If I found out that a
member of our church or a church officer was lying to non-believers in the
community, as a way to get by or protect themself or protect his reputation,
yes, he'd be disciplined."

- Doug Wilson (January 31, 2007)

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