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6 thoughts on “Asheville City Council Meeting: Live Twitter Coverage

  1. J

    What’s really funny/sad is that none of the council members can vocalize a rationale behind eliminating the public comment, especially Gordon.

    As soon as public comment is brought up, they defend the ordinance as a whole – yes, the ordinance has its positives, but there’s no reason to do away with public comment. Their inability to explain why public comment is so harmful should speak volumes – there is no good reason to do away with it. Rather than amend the ordinance, keep the incentives, bonuses, and LEED points, Gordon and Co. would rather just shut the people up.

    Bravo, progressives.

  2. J

    There’s a massive loophole in Cecil’s progressive logic. Cecil says that people who live in single family neighborhoods aren’t affected by the ordinance, so they have no say in it. This is really just a convenient way for him to shabbily attempt to dismiss the opposition, since many opponents come from single family neighborhoods like Gordon’s, Cecil’s, and Esther’s.

    So, if people who aren’t affected by the ordinance aren’t being listened to, then why are we adopting and ordinance written by Cindy Weeks, Robin Merrell, and various city planners, all whom live in single family residences?

    In other words, you’re a NIMBY if you only protest when it’s close to you, and you’re dismissed if the project doesn’t affect you. Brilliant.

    Why does Robin Merrell keep addressing Asheville City Council? She’s not even from Buncombe.

  3. J

    From the Vance Institute’s (once headed up by Gordon and Cecil) Proposal for a Transparency in Government Ordinance:

    “Exclusion of the public from discussions that substantively affect the public wealth and future taxation prevents meaningful citizen contribution and prevents an appearance of insider-dealing and non-accountability.”

    There’s that Gordonian principle again: when I was out of government, being excluded was bad; now that I’m in government, exclusion is good.

  4. Gordon Smith

    From an earlier article:

    “That was the element which prompted my ‘no’ vote on Oct. 12,” Bothwell writes. “However opponents have also failed to mention that any variance from the rule would trigger public hearings, that the rules include design and appearance in accordance with the surrounding neighborhood, and green/affordability requirements that are quite stringent. Contrary to many e-mails I’ve received, there is no zoning district in the City where 70 unit developments would receive automatic approval under this rule.”

    He adds that, for many affordable housing developments, avoiding what can be a lengthy and contentious Council approval process is a major incentive, and that he believes the rules are a necessary corrective from the previous path pursued by the city.

    “Furthermore, opponents have seemed to overlook the pro-development changes in Asheville zoning enacted about a decade ago which have pushed single-family and high end development at the expense of density and affordability,” he asserts. “The issues that this proposal seeks to address are just the leading edge of a pitched battle over climate change that we will lose at our peril.”

    He also notes, “I have challenged anti-proposition people to come up with an alternative way to encourage green, dense building, and no one has offered a single proposal.”

  5. J

    Gordon,

    Thank you for proving my point. You simply never address why it is important to shut out the public, or why you could have amended the ordinance to preserve public comment. The only question now is whether it is because you don’t want to, or cannot.

    Unless of course you want to rely on “avoiding…council approval” as your reasoning. In other words, you endorse the quieting of the public, because, heaven forbid, someone may object. Bravo, Gordon, bravo. Way to empower the few over the many. You’ve focused on the wealth of the developers over the liberties of the citizens; developers no longer have to justify themselves to the citizens. I only wish I could say I was surprised.

    “If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude greater than the animating contest for freedom, go home from us in peace. We seek not your counsel, nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you; May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen.” – Samuel Adams

  6. JWTJr

    “There’s that Gordonian principle again: when I was out of government, being excluded was bad; now that I’m in government, exclusion is good.”

    That’s a common thread of the left’s politicians. Let the people have their say, until they get into office, then they know best.

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