Posted - 10/08/2010 : 11:19:44 AM
We need more people like Mike Dunlap Published: Thursday, October 7, 2010 2:15 PM EDT
To the editor:
While I have tried to stay above the fray on this Mr. Keith's recent letter to the editor requires a response.
Firstly, while Mike Dunlap certainly does not need me to stand up for his record, he has always impressed me with his willingness to listen to differing viewpoints and make informed decisions which he feels are in the best interests of his constituents. While I will be sorry to see him go I am sure that Al Balog will be a fine replacement.
Mr. Griffith's assertion that the City of Three Rivers does not have the highest tax rate of any taxing authority in St. Joseph County is laughable. You need to look no further than the county's own tax table (available on the countys website at):
Let's look at Mr. Keith's (as well as Mr. Griffith's) accomplishments while serving on the City Commission.
1) The ill-advised Welton development on Portage Ave. Had the commission done their due diligence they would have found that Mr. Welton was, in fact, practically insolvent at the time the Commission approved the sale of the property to Mr. Welton and the value of the lots created for the development would never support the subsequent special assessment for infrastructure improvements to the tune of approximately $25,000 per lot. Mr. Welton, at the time, was in default on a land contract for the 40 acre parcel adjacent to this property as well as his condominium development on N. Main St.
2) The approval of the East Parking lot While this project had some redeeming qualities the city certainly had more than adequate parking available on the west side of Railroad Dr. which could have been made more pedestrian- friendly for much less cost. The idea that this project was approved when there was no actual deeded access from the parking lot to Main St. is, in my mind, ludicrous. Was this ever brought out when discussions were taking place. Not to my memory.
3) The knee-jerk firing of the long-time finance director On an election eve, the Commission, with the acquiescence of both Commissioners Griffith and Keith, decided to terminate a 14-year employee of the City because of "insubordination." While I do not pretend to have the particulars of the issues involved, to simply do this without any thought or discussion has now cost the city (through its insurer(s)) more than $200,000. While the insurance company(ies) will foot this bill we all know what happens when you file a claim with your insurance. We will pay for it in the end.
Mr. Keith We need more "people like him" and less people like you and Mr. Griffith.
Source: Three Rivers Commercial Letter to the Editor.
Liberty First. Everything else second.