Keep watch on proposed ordinance
To the editor:
Like what we saw at St Michael’s, the Wawa ordinance that will affect properties all over Abington has already changed — and yet no new advertising has been required of Mr. Goodman. The St. Michael’s project changed a little here, a little there, a little in the next step, until the entire project was unlike anything at all that had been advertised. The motor vehicle fueling center ordinance has just taken a giant leap with no new advertising.
Mr. Goodman is rewriting ordinances in other townships, too. If you have not viewed the video, which you can find online, called the “United States of ALEC,” you should do so — to learn how ordinances and regulations are being written by corporations to serve their own interests. These are then given to legislators who pass them in a happy collaboration.
Mr. Goodman has chosen the passing legislation route — openly. That’s how confidant he is. He can only do this with the acquiescence of the 15 Abington commissioners who will vote on Dec. 6. If they vote yes, it will be clear that they have not seen the red signs on lawn after lawn, nor heard the testimony of residents who came in great numbers to the podium to talk about the unbelievable things the so- called experts said at a meeting and to relay many negative impacts this ordinance would have just in this one place where it is being applied. Not even considered were all the other places that will be similarly affected in the future.
Sadly, these folks will not understand until it is too late, and the property owners have this use “by right” — with 24- hour service, reduced or eliminated buffers, huge signs and dangerous traffic that is likely to send speeding through their neighborhoods, and much more.
We should say t hanks t o Cathy Gauthier, David Good, Charles Carter and other planning commission members who heard t he r esidents t hat t hey are serving and set a course f or our planning commission t hat r ecommended against t he project. But will t he commissioners hear t heir own chosen evaluators? When we have commissioners who choose t o expand t he r i ghts of a single developer to t he detriment of so many t hat have l oudly and clearly spoken in every way t hey know how, we can only hope t hat r esidents will begin seeking a r eplacement f or t he next election. Finding someone good to r un is t he hard part. Start asking around now. I t ’s an i mportant part of having a good governmental process. Dec 6 will provide a t elling exercise i n who i s working on behalf of t he r esidents who elect t hem and who may have other i nterests. Lora Lehmann Meadowbrook AbingtonCitizens. com