Recent Examples of the Council Not Representing the Citizens
These are recent examples of entire groups that have been denied representation because their own elected leaders on the council refuse to listen and take action:
- Those who want to save the community mural and historic buildings in Uptown.
The Town council has voted to move forward with demolition of these beloved structures to make way for the new Trail East building that will cost millions. (For more information on why this is a bad idea, see the Economic Development issue page.)
- The Town’s own Historic Preservation Commission.
The Historic Preservation Commission recommended the Town save the three historical buildings in Uptown, but the council ignored the request.
- The residents of the Blackstone Trails subdivision, when they brought serious concerns about the newly planned location of a fire station next to their homes.
These residents asked the council to look into locating the planned fire station on one of the other corners of the intersection so that it would not be immediately next to their homes. The council refused to take the time or effort to simply ask the property owners on the other sides of the intersection if they would sell. The council said they assumed it would cost too much. They refused to take the time to make a decision based on facts—it was quicker and easier for them to just assume.
- Those who would rather have their taxes be spent on the NEEDS of the community over the WANTS of Uptown.
The council is moving forward with the Trail East project, to the tune of $12 million dollars, while the roads, sewers, and water systems continue to deteriorate—the money that should be invested in our infrastructure keeps getting funneled into wasteful projects. Many citizens have spoken up about this issue, but the council has shown no indication that they are heeding the concerns of those who actually have to pay for this spending. Rather than hold off on the Trail East plan to better examine the issues, they continue to barrel along.
For details on the wastefulness of the Trail East project, see the Economic Development issue page.
You Deserve Real Representation
I am tired of seeing people and groups begging the council to hear them, and then being denied representation. In fact, I’ve experienced firsthand the frustration of not being heard or represented when I have tried to get the attention of our town council. From what I have witnessed recently, I am not alone in my struggle to find representation.
Our elected officials behave as though they are burdened when individuals and groups within our community disagree with the Uptown plan or other agenda items. If they won’t listen to their constituents, it makes me wonder who they are representing? The Uptown plan? Their own agendas? Or the people?
The council nearly always votes unanimously to support the plan over the people, time and time again. This is wrong.
As a council person:
- I will be there to represent YOU. While I may not always be able to give you the answer you want, I pledge to always listen and to help get you in touch with those who can help you with your concern.
- I will be available to all residents. This is really important to me. Normal is not set up with a ward system, so you know exactly who represents you—all council members are supposed to represent the entire town of Normal. That means when I am your council person, you can contact me directly, no matter where you live. And if you know one of my family members (I have many family members in this community), you can ask them to make the introduction. I truly want to be available and accessible to help, and I want to represent every citizen of Normal. After all, this is your town, and you pay for this government!
- I will put your NEEDS first, rather than any WANTS. The Uptown plan will not take precedence over the Town’s infrastructure, economy, and the concerns of citizens. I pledge to put the NEEDS of the residents over the WANTS of the Uptown plan!