Residents Left With Few Options
Originally uploaded by MatthewBradley.
Last night, City Council brushed aside citizen concerns in opposition to two different issues.
Roundtree residents expressed their opposition to rezoning after the fact when a fraternity opened up on National Av. These residents spoke on the issue last week in opposition to the rezoning, which was NOT recommended for approval by the Planning and Zoning Commission. Council approved the illegal refurbishment, with Mayor Carlson saying the developer acted in "good faith." Personally, I don't see how a well-known, experienced real estate developer could NOT be aware of zoning restrictions of any property he owned. At least Councilman Jones spoke up about legitimatizing the usage after a developer obviously ignored zoning rules. It just begs for more of the same.
Northside residents in both Grant Beach and Woodland Heights were also brushed aside in the name of "public safety." That storyline is prominent on this blog, at www.137th.com , and the Springfield News-Leader, so I won't dwell on it here. We do owe a debt of gratitude to Councillors Denny Whayne and Mary Collette for their support.
When elected officials ignore the citizenry, citizens often feel either alienated, or compelled to escalate their protestations. These active neighborhood organizations do a lot of good for their respective neighborhoods. When they're turned away from the table by our city government, individuals will either walk away, or look to the few options left, like civil disobedience.
They know their vote doesn't count-at least to those now in office.
Photo from Flickr: Originally uploaded by MatthewBradley.
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