Monday, November 21, 2011

The Rest of the Story . . .

Last week the OD reported that at the last Common Council meeting, residents assailed the State's proposed Arterial project.
The council took action on the project, too. The body voted not to overturn Mayor David Roefaro’s veto of a previous resolution that urged the state to consider the large part of the Arterial that would be untouched by the project.

Then the council unanimously passed a nearly identical resolution, except that it reinstated one of the Utica Master Plan subcommittees to work with the state to establish a long-term plan for the Arterial.

New Hartford Online in Missed Opportunities? posts a letter from the chairman of that subcommittee indicating that he essentially was unaware the Council was going to do this.

Doesn't the Council ask people first before giving them work to do?

Reading his letter, it becomes apparent that the problems some Uticans are having with NYSDOT's proposal are more the result of the City Council failing to take a position on the street closures, wall, and property takings, than the NYSDOT not caring about Uticans. 

If the elected representatives of the people, the Common Council, do not object to these aspects of the State's project, then it's reasonable for NYSDOT to conclude that its current design reflects the will of Uticans.

The Council needs to decide one way or another on this project.  THEY are being paid to be Utica's voice.  Ducking the issue by tossing the "hot potato"  to a group of citizens not only is irresponsible, it is disrespectful to those citizens who already put a lot of time into the Master Plan and thought their work was done.


Anonymous said...

You're IMPOSSIBLE. The committee is a standing committee. If the volunteers don't want to be on the committee, or do work, they should resign. Otherwise, any opponents of this should be thankful that at least one councilman is trying to fight it. If he's not doing exactly what you think he should, then maybe you should be reaching out to advise. But beating him up will only alienate him. Geez, have a little appreciation for the one person that's at least trying.

Strikeslip said...

Read the chairman's letter. The subcommittee's recommendation for a Boulevard was rejected by city planning and its consultants, and by the Common Council.

If Utica's elected officials refuse to get behind a Boulevard, there is no way the State will pay more attention to a bunch of unelected citizens.

Putting the task back in the Subcommittee's lap is a deflection from the Council's own indecision.