Introduction: College Station Withdrawing from ICLEI
At last Thursday’s council meeting, I proposed to the council to withdraw College Station’s membership in the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI) – an international organization founded in 1990 by the United Nations. Our city has been paying somewhere north of $1,000 to be a member of this organization, yet it is not to be found anywhere within the budget. Few have ever heard of ICLEI, and fewer still know that College Station has actually been a member since 2009.
I am truly excited to announce that the proposed 2013 College Station budget will not include funding for this organization. It is an insidious, extreme institution that does not represent our citizens, and for our taxpayers to continue to fund it would be ridiculous.
I applaud our management staff for their thoughtful decision to agree to withdraw from ICLEI in the next budgetary year. In particular, I’d like to thank Jason Stuebe, Assistant to the City Manager, for his extraordinarily thorough research into this and many other topics. Our staff has made the right decision here.
I also want to thank a citizen, Mary Oliver, for her steadfast efforts to bring this issue to my attention over the past couple of years. Without her interest in the subject this might not have been possible. College Station is blessed to have citizens like her who care about what goes on with their local government.
Before I knew that our staff would agree to withdraw from ICLEI, I had begun writing a primer on what this organization is and does, as well as some notes on its history and founders. Because ICLEI is an international organization that seeks to impose its policies at all levels of government, and because its policies have been adopted by many local governments, we must be aware of what it is and what it seeks to do, as well as guard ourselves for any future actions to involve ourselves in their initiatives.
This article, therefore, is intended to give a view into what ICLEI is and what its aims are. Given the new information about our withdrawal from ICLEI, let it serve as an explanation to our citizens why this organization is a threat to our individual rights and our local government’s sovereignty in decision-making. Continue reading