We whole-heartedly support the use of $200 million in state bonds to construct a basketball arena at the University of Oregon.
We believe that public agencies should, whenever possible, spend Oregon taxpayer dollars with Oregon companies and their employees through, at minimum, an open and transparent bid process to ensure compliance with public contracting laws and compliance with prevailing wage laws.
We believe that channeling public money through no-bid contracts or hand-selecting contractors by eliminating a competitive bid process should be avoided except for the most extraordinary circumstances that yield no other option.
Our concern is not with the basketball arena, but rather the process by which $200 million of bonds (backed by the full faith and credit of the state of Oregon) were spent through a questionable use of an emergency declaration, special procurement and sole source procurement that exist exclusively for the Oregon University System under Oregon Administrative Rules, Chapter 580, Div. 63.