Friday, June 21, 2024

City attorney divulges few details of confidential projects

Richard Appicello
City Recorder Cathy Steere and City Attorney Richard Appicello

Lincoln City – At last Monday’s Lincoln City City Council meeting, the sole topic was City Attorney Richard Appicello’s project list, which Appicello claimed is confidential. He then divulged a few details of several of his projects in priority order:

  1. Two dangerous building orders and compliance agreements associated with those cases, four in total (to “go after” property owners, said Appicello).
  2. Taft property acquisition, with or without prospective purchaser agreement (no details were provided).
  3. Sign ordinance review, which is going to the Planning Commission on June 19.
  4. Charter [Cable TV/Internet] franchise ordinance review, that’s been with outside counsel.
  5. Social media policy (for city staff and contractors, when they are working).
  6. Development agreement ordinance which sets forth minimum requirements for the RFEI [Request for Expression of Interest] properties and annexations with the form agreement (re ORS Chapter 94, Logan Park was mentioned as an example).
  7. Form incentive agreements for business housing development (no details were provided).
  8. Comprehensive right-of-way regulation (no details were provided).
  9. Records management and retention (no details were provided).
  10. Presentation to council on “court of record” options (so citizens can’t appeal to the Circuit Court in Newport, but must appeal to the State Appellate Court in Salem, Appicello said, and followed up saying that no one has appealed in the last five years, or more).
  11. Complete previously closed and approved land exchanges; there are two that are incomplete (no details were provided).
  12. Urban growth management agreement, basic and advanced (no details were provided).
  13. Annexation standards (no details were provided).
  14. Amend SDC [Systems Development Charge] ordinance to address abandonment (no details were provided).

Appicello said there are “a lot more projects” on his list, but did not elaborate.

After a short discussion, Mayor Don Williams listed his priorities, which included several items not on Appicello’s list:

  1. Social media (#5 above)
  2. Development agreement (housing) (#6 above)
  3. Inclusionary zoning (housing)
  4. Sign ordinance (#3 above)
  5. Retaliation policy
  6. The Villages [at Cascade Head] HOA
  7. Special events ordinance
  8. Annex East Devil’s Lake State Park
  9. DUI impound

Councilor Diana Hinton agreed with Williams, saying she has ”about the same list.”

Councilor Riley Hoagland said his top priorities are “finance and TRT [Transient Room Tax] collection.”

Councilor Dick Anderson said his top two priorities are Health and Safety inspections of monthly rentals, and “housing.” He also mentioned an “off-shore oil-drilling resolution” and “political signs” (#4 on Williams list).

Councilors Judy Casper and Susan Wahlke did not offer their list of priorities.

While the public was never provided a copy of Appicello’s confidential project list, it was not until seven minutes into the meeting that the city councilors got a first look at the classified list. Surprisingly, by printing out the secret memo, Appicello may have violated Lincoln City Municipal Code, which says “staff shall only provide confidential materials to council members in coded written form or electronically to an official city email address with no print option.” Appicello authored this law in December 2017.

Justin Werner
Justin Werner
Justin Werner is the founder and editor of the Lincoln City Homepage, a trusted source of local news and information for residents and visitors of Lincoln City, Oregon. He is also a community leader, entrepreneur, and dedicated advocate for transparency and accountability in local government.


  1. Apples needs to go! He should not be involved in any dangerous building orders or any type of enforcement! Allow departments to do their jobs! Yet enforcement is his number one priority on his list. He should not be involved unless the alleged violator has an attorney. He lost his assistant enforcer, the ex chief of police. Wake up council! Fire him!


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