The Bright Side

The following excerpt is from two years ago (December 20, 2017), but like the past, the issue and the principle of the issue are as relevant today as when it was written: 

“The successful opposition of residents and locals to the proposed land designation change for the Hillmoor property wasn’t a single-minded effort nor were the reasons for which the individual alderpersons voted against changing the city’s Comprehensive Plan the same; however, despite the variety of reasons, it did enable the requested change to be defeated.” In the complexity of reasons, there was one common element on which all the opposition agreed. Leaving the comprehensive plan as it stood was better than approving the proposed change, which would legally open the door to possible unknown development. It is important for those who stood in opposition to knowing that no matter what an owner may say or promise about how he, she or it will develop the Hillmoor property prior to a comprehensive plan change, such an assurance becomes irrelevant once the comprehensive plan is changed. This is because any development that is compatible with the new zoning classification and with the city’s ordinances also has to be approved by the city’s plan commission and the city council, or they and the city will be subject to being sued for unfair discrimination, which would be costly for the city to defend and which the city would most likely lose.  In other words, any change to the comprehensive plan prevents the city from being able to say no to any developer’s idea of what to then submit as a development plan, or face the likely lawsuit, and the developer winning such a lawsuit, as was so evidently apparent when Hummel won its suit against the city.

The expression “Keep it Simple Stupid” is known as the “Kiss” principle. It means that it is usually best to keep things simple, and easy to understand.  A person’s actions are motivated by a basic thought. That basic thought guides and directs one’s attention, concern and efforts.  That basic thought is a person’s: ‘what I care about the foundation.’ Whatever a person cares about will draw and hold the most attention and determine most subsequent actions. Believers will work for, fight to save, and fight to protect their foundational beliefs. That effort varies with the strength of a person’s caring, and that caring can range from moderate concern to an all-consuming obsession.

The mayor’s seeming obsession with moving the Hillmoor property into a commercial/residential development is a repeat of the force applied two years ago when the same basic requested change was denied by the city council, and eight years ago when the city council (including the current mayor) turned against the city’s residents and changed the city’s comprehensive plan to settle the Hummel lawsuit.  An elected government that does not represent the people, but goes against the will of the people is almost invariably wrong.  Elected leaders who go against the will of the people, must have an overwhelmingly good reason for doing so and must be open to full scrutiny.  The current mayor’s recent actions and speeches about Hillmoor give every appearance of repeating the non-representative actions and speeches he gave about the Hummel property when he was an alderperson.  The skewed, illegal and ‘against the expressed will of the public’ action he took back then was never brought to open scrutiny, not then and not now.


Sign up for Updates