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Wednesday, October 27, 2004
 
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Citing quality of life concerns, Ohio University president announces opposition to ballot Issue 2

ATHENS, Ohio (Oct. 27, 2004) -- After significant deliberation, Ohio University President Roderick McDavis has announced his opposition to Issue 2 and the proposed moratorium on development in the Athens community. McDavis cited potential long-lasting negative effects on the economy and quality of life.

Issue 2, a local initiative that will be on the Nov. 2 ballot, proposes to stop the issuance of construction permits for commercial and rental residential development in Athens for 18 months.

"In the course of closely studying the proposition's language, it has become clear to me that the moratorium would hurt Athens," McDavis said. "I feel that it threatens to hinder the local community in terms of attracting new business and in creating an environment of growth for our existing businesses."

"If Issue 2 were passed, among the consequences would be our community's inability to add to the local economy and tax base, at the expense of local schools and other services that support the quality of life in the region," McDavis said.

For example, proposed expansion plans by O'Bleness Memorial Hospital and Diagnostic Hybrids Inc. (DHI) could be halted by this measure. DHI is planning an expansion that would add 600 jobs over 10 years.

"These are examples of projects that would not only add jobs, but would contribute greatly to the quality of life in the region," McDavis said. "While I appreciate the intent of those supporting the moratorium, much is uncertain in how it would be administered and implemented."

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Media Contact: Associate Vice President for University Communications and Marketing Hub Burton, (740) 593-2200 or Pager: (740) 290-4479

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