Friday, December 14, 2007

Comments & Commentary by Charles Hill

This past month the South Main business owners had the opportunity to experience a water main break. The dedicated City Staff fixed the break and business went on. At the next council meeting the break was discussed and our illustrious City Council President, Bob Kneemiller, had this to say,”At least they didn’t complain like the North Main businesses.” That might not be an exact quote but it is close. This statement sums up the council and mayor’s belief of what our opinions are to them. We are a nuisance when we hold them accountable, we are troubling them when we want a street fixed, it’s an inconvenience to them when they have to repair something. This attitude exists because the fish rots from the head down. Mayor York has always placed the average residents in second place. Kneemiller’s comment was directed at the hard working business owners who had to endure weeks and weeks of North Main Street being closed. This closure hurt our only means of income, hurt our families and our customers. So Bob, next time you want to call us complainers be ready to fork over the money for our loss when you can’t keep the city running. Last time I looked that was your job.
The other part of my anger is about South Main and our usual complainers. Archie Scott, Gene Woods, Karen House and the infamous Mydler family. They just can’t stop complaining about one thing or another. Archie complains because the city won’t spend a million dollars on a visitors center, Wood complains about a business simply wanting to increase revenues for the city by adding a temporary tent that can’t be seen from the street. House complains about the building of new housing on South Main. They all complain and rightfully so about the lack of maintenance of the street.
When it comes down to it. Main Street is not full of complainers per se. There are people who actually believe the city is responsible to them as taxpayers and the city should be able to fix things in a timely manner.
Back to the tent and South Main. Only in Historic St. Charles can you get permission to place a crappy looking tent on Main Street, blocking a Historic Marker to sell cookies that were baked in a residence off of Sibley Street. Then the same South Main complainers decided that a tent that would help support a business, bring in tax dollars, bring people to Main Street, a tent that is high quality and can’t be seen from the street, doesn’t cover anything historic, should not be allowed. Come on!
Lastly, I watched the Veterans Day Memorial Service and want to thank our Veterans. The one thing that struck me as we honored our Vets in front of a memorial that cost in excess of $300,000, is how many vets could we have helped with that money? Recently it was discovered that 25 percent of those homeless in the US were veterans who had served our country. This is a national disgrace. Instead of spending money on monuments we should be finding out ways to help our service men and women. Creating an environment that helps them find jobs, helps them find shelter. This monument was spearheaded by a group of self-serving veterans who felt they deserved a statue. These veterans should be finding ways to help their brothers in arms, not create monuments to themselves.