Wednesday, March 16, 2005

We've now heard something from the Northwestern about the "no-bid bathrooms"

We have now heard from the Northwestern ( At least we have had a piece written on the dispute and how the state still believes the city broke the law. It will be interesting to hear what their own opinion is, especially since they, too, supported waiving the bid process, despite their constant cheering for fair play. Hypocrisy on the part of the Northwestern - at least the editorial board - seems to be par for the course (no pun intended, Mr. Castle).

Kudos to Mr. Geoffrey Matze for having the courage to challenge city leaders when he believed that they did something wrong and overstepped their bounds. More cities need residents who are not afraid to have the courage of their convictions and who will stand up for what they believe is right.

While this is a sticky situation, for the Attorney General's office to take such a strong position on it without, as Mr. Kraft says, getting information from the city before rendering an opinion, suggests to me that the law is pretty clear on this matter. Moreover, the attorney in the AG's office says he did consider the contaminated soil issue when rendering his opinion.

Those things notwithstanding, I said several months ago that C. R. Meyer was and is certainly not the only contractor around who knows how to properly handle contaminated soil. Many contractors deal with such problems all the time and they are well-versed in how to handle them. I maintain that position because it is fact.

What I find particularly troubling is mayoral candidate Bill Castle's non-chalant attitude calling it a "non-event." Whether the city erred or not, the Attorney General's office is of the opinion that the city broke the law. That means that litigation could very well be coming down the pike. And litigation will undoubtedly cost this city something - if not financially, then certainly in reputation and image. Yet a man who wants to represent this community and its people has the attitude that it is no big deal and it can essentially be swept under the carpet!!

But I guess we should have expected such an attitude from the very man who boasted about his close personal relationship with the owner of C.R. Meyer and even discussed city business and a further business relationship with that very owner on the golf course. He also feels it's okay to continue voting on issues involving C.R. Meyer as they come up. So really, why should we be shocked over his latest remarks?

Whether the city truly erred or not, Bill Castle does not seem to be concerned with fair play - which is precisely why the state's bidding law was created in the first place. That is one of the biggest reasons he does not deserve to be mayor of this community.

As far as the amphitheater restrooms and concession area go, we need to take a good hard long look at this before allowing C.R. Meyer to proceed.

- Cheryl Hentz