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Thursday, July 5, 2012: 6:46 pm
More from The Mayor
Reference your "blog" of July 4th at 7:09 P.M. I expressed this explanation to Mr. Bader, earlier, but let me explain it one more time. Honesty is something I adhere to shakika and, when I am wrong or mistaken, I will be the first to acknowledge it or explain my actions. And, YOU (Shakika), of all people, should know this! YES, when we first were approached with annexation, and when I was asked for my opinion....I WAS UNDER THE IMPRESSION THAT IT WAS SOMETHING THE RESIDENTS COULD VOTE ON. I WAS WRONG! However, I did not discover that the Indiana Statutes will not allow a "Referendum" or vote by the residents on Annexation, until we were well into considering it. I was made aware that we were only required to hold one (1) "Public Meeting" before allowing the Council to vote on the matter. I "publicly" stated that I felt this was not fair to the residents (both pro and con)....and I exercised my right to hold four (4) "Public Meetings", which actually turned out to be six (6) such meetings, in fairness and consideration to the residents.
At the initial planning, I stated the purpose of the "Public Meetings" was for the Mayor, and Council Members, to listen to all sides...investigate and provide questions to answers, etc.,.....then, on Council Meetings of June 18 and July 2, the Council Members would be expressing their concerns, opinions, giving answers to questions that had previously been asked by residents, as well as Counsil's opportunity to ask questions, of their own, from representatives of the Legal Counsel, Financial Advisors, Engineers and/or anyone else and, it would not be a question and answer session from the audience. After all, we had sat thru six (6) meetings of hearing the same thing, over and over again (some good, some bad), by mostly the same people....so, was it so unfair to allow the Council Members to have an honest, open discussion, of the entire matter? I think you know what I mean.
Now, I was asked by one of the remonstrators..."why would I not want to conduct a non-binding referendum?" The simple reason is Statutes do not provide for such. And, if I chose to do it anyway...do you realize the costs involved in setting up the election, providing election employees/personnel, providing places of voting location, determining just which household would be eligible to vote, determining their eligibility by land ownership, Election Machine and printing costs, time involved, etc.? Not only would it involve every resident of Martinsville (which could be divided by precincts), but it would also include only portions of certain precincts outside the city limits and, how difficult would that be to divide and police? Believe it or not, I did consider the possibility but believe the costs to be prohibitive. Honesty and Fairness is important to me and, I believe the bridges we have built thus far have been productive, but not nearly enough. I think you also know that I do allow residents to speak at our meetings unless it has been specially advertised as a special meeting not for comments, as sometimes is necessary.
Thursday, July 5, 2012: 7:39 pm
More from MarkMcDaniel
|I have a brilliant idea for you Mayor that you pretend to not thought of. Resend a certified letter to all affected landowners as you already have once, with a ballot and see what your response is. Everyone knows what the results would be that is why you are not going to do it. I'm glad you are all of a sudden becoming concerned about expenses when it comes to finding out how the people feel about annexation. Just cut six hours off Ross Holloway time this month and it will pay for this mailing. |
I will make a better suggestion,knowing your sincere in wanting to know how the people feel, I will pay for a certified mailing of a ballot to all effected properties if your administration will honor the results. I not holding my breath for any calls on that offer.
As far as your generous offer of four extra meetings it would have been nice if at one of those meetings the council would have been allowed to respond to citizens who got up and spoke so that there could have been what they call a "public meeting"where elected officials actually respond and speak to the public.
Thursday, July 5, 2012: 7:42 pm
More from Shakika
I can find volunteers to work the polls. No problem. Why worry about money now? We just spent $50K with Ice Miller and $40K with Umbaugh so to be worried about cost now makes no sense. I think we can still have a referendum.
Please reference the state statute prevents us from having a vote? I'd be willing to read it.
Also please reference the statutes tell you how many meetings you can or cannot have before voting on an issues? I don't believe there are any laws controlling this.
Why don't we have a meeting where WE THE PEOPLE can actually ask the consultants questions? Why are they being shielded? Why do they hide behind the "no questions" rule you have enacted?
Thursday, July 5, 2012: 7:48 pm
More from GregBader
|Mr. Mayor, |
I think Mr. McDaniels has a great idea. What say you???? I'd even be willing to fill up my back seat with envelopes and deliver them by myself. For Free. In fact, I'll pay you to, not Holloway (too expensive) to help out with the project. So....now that cost is no object, why can this not be done? Seriously.
Thursday, July 5, 2012: 7:51 pm
More from GregBader
|Well, if the politicians in the 4 generous meetings we have been granted have not understood what the people want, they never will. Money always speaks louder than people. Every time.|
Thursday, July 5, 2012: 9:49 pm
More from outsider
|I believe if the mayor does what is right he will save his political career, that of the council, and every person who works directly with him. I can see a big house cleaning party in less than four years. This annexation is too big, too radical not well thought out and out of control. So,I say stay the course, and the house will be cleaned.|
Thursday, July 5, 2012: 10:10 pm
More from nobodyimportant
|Mark, you may want to withdraw your offer of sending a certified letter to every "affected household". That would not only be the proposed area of annexation, but the entire city of Martinsville. That's quite a tab. And beside, I'm not sure the results would or even should influence the decision. In our form of government (republic), elected officials are not supposed to consider whether or not a decision will harm them in the next election. You're probably laughing at this point. I said "supposed". If an elected official is willing to put his or her political future on the line in order to make a decision that he or she believes to be in the best interest of the citizen whole, I'd say that is the kind of person we want holding office. |
We elect people to represent us, not take a poll every time there is an issue that is contentious. You only have to look at la la land (California) to see a system of referendums at will.
Again, I don't give a whit whether this annexation happens or not. It is the way cities and towns grow. It has existed since the founding of our country. A decision such as this one should be in the best interest of the citizen whole, not just a faction.
We have clearly heard from some of the residents of the affected area. One side of the discussion that I have not heard is what are the down sides of not annexing? Annexation is supposed to accomplish somethings. What is is the impact of not accomplishing those things?
For instance, if the existing and projected needed services of the present city are thought to be inadequate in capacity, safety, cost-effectiveness, efficiency.....whatever, and the steps that are needed will severely impact the current residents, one way of attending to that is to expand the affected area when making those changes, spreading the revenue stream to a wider circle.
Clearly some of the residents of the proposed area to be annexed wish not to be brought into that circle, incurring additional costs for the added services. That is understandable. But it is not just about those people. It is about the citizen whole. In every change there are winners and losers.
For all those reasons, I repeat that you may want to withdraw your offer. You may not like the return on the investment.
Friday, July 6, 2012: 12:10 am
More from The Mayor
|To Mark McDaniel:|
Mark, ole buddy, in reply to your "blog" of 7/5/12, tell you what I'll do. Your offer to pick up the tab to send out such a mailing is a gracious offer. However, it will have to include every land owner inside the City Limits of Martinsville as well. I will pass along your offer to members of the Martinsville City Council and, in addition...I will ask them if they would consider another "Public Meeting" where they would respond to questions....now that they have listened, and had time to learn details to annexation (which was the purpose of listening in the first place). But, no way can I guarantee you of their decision as each one votes on their own...and do not seek my permission to vote either way.
Thank you for saying what needed saying, even though it is unpopular. There's a big difference in doing what is best for the overall picture vs. personal feelings and personal preference. That's the obligation sworn to when accepting any position of responsibility if one is honest in his efforts and endeavors.
Friday, July 6, 2012: 5:14 am
More from Just observing
|I'm going to cast my stone again, in Dannys direction of course! Danny your hypocrisy is overwhelming. You have contradicted yourself so much on here its laughable. I want to enlighten you once more and your less than a handful of voters. You badger and berate people on here, yet you are a complete imbecile. THE WARS OVER HERO, YOU LOST YOUR ELECTION BID.How are you so much better and have all the answers? Obviously no one agreed with you before. However you jump on every post or article listed here that grants you an opportunity to be negative. The fact is your clueless on these issues.You think its funny because you sit in your house and type this trash like you have the answer to the worlds problem. You are half of the problem! Do something positive to prove me wrong!|
Friday, July 6, 2012: 7:47 am
More from MarkMcDaniel
|Sounds like a great counter offer Mayor Phil Deckard. I pay for a mailing to 10,000 additional residents that annexation does not effect then when we get the results you still will not pledge to honor the outcome of the vote. Abiding by the outcome of the vote was the whole purpose. At least you finally admitted at the end of your post your pushing for annexation and that you know what is best for us whether we like it or not, that is honest.|
Nobodyimportant I agree with part of your letter, but mostly it is flawed. When government knows better what is best for its citizens than the citizens do and does not let the citizens even vote on the matter that is called tyranny. I believe this is why we left England to form a new nation. Would you be so willing to hand your future over to a government body knowing they knew what was best for you? What qualifications does the present administration have to make one think they know whats best for Martinsville. What evidence is there that Martinville should double in size because of all the activity that is going on. What evidence is there that any of these individuals can foresee into the future?
Friday, July 6, 2012: 8:08 am
More from Danny Stewart
Hero? No. When you have the guts to say who you are, then you come talk to me.
Friday, July 6, 2012: 8:52 am
More from nobodyimportant
|Mark. I appreciate the give and take on this. We do disagree on the issue of how our government works (or is supposed to work). We elect people to make decisions, the hard ones along with the easy ones. If we want decisions to be made by referendum, we give up representative government. |
You could not be further from right when you said, "When government knows better what is best for its citizens than the citizens do and does not let the citizens even vote on the matter that is called tyranny." Citizens voting on matters of government is not a core principal of a republic. A few states allow referendum votes on some selected areas of decision making.
I think if you will step back and re-think the implications of doing away with representative government, you will agree that with all its faults, it is still the best form of government on planet Earth.
We didn't bolt from England because we thought that we knew better than they. We were not allowed to send elected representatives to participate in the decision-making. We preferred representative government but were denied, so we revolted.
But that was a process of forming a national government. Once that was done, the lower layers were formed on the core principles of the national model. Down to the lowest level, we elect people to decide for us. It isn't perfect, but it is what it is. We say to our mayors, councils, legislatures, congress, and presidents, "decide for us." If we disagree with their decisions, we get our opportunities to say so and then act at the polls to put different people in, but to do the same thing, decide for us.
Annexation brings another dimension, where a unit of government makes decisions that not only affect the citizenry within their boundaries, but some who did not elect them to office. Where once annexation was frequently inititated by those wanting to be brought into the town, many annexation proposals are now bitter fights. But our representative form of government created the rules that allow these actions. Representative govenment can change the rules. But that's another day. Right now, it is the law of the land, and people inside the area proposed for annexation don't get a referendum vote on whether they want it or not.
Mayor Deckard didn't do the homework in anticipating the response and spoke hastily of a vote. He's owned up to that mistake. I still say that the most impactful thing to do to demonstrate the opinions of the residents in the area to be annexed is to organize (very carefully, crossing every "t" and dotting every "i", a carefully worded petition in opposition. The first thing that will tell you is how broad is the support for or against the proposal. I would think a very high percentage in opposition would carry weight. If that is not already being done, I should think the Council would be wise in delaying the decision in order for a reasonable time for the petition to be administered.
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