My Opinion piece in the Hickory Daily Record on August 10, 2007
Buffalo's dumpsite drama too personal for city's leaders?
Listening to the mayor on WHKY radio, I heard his take on the Buffalo's sinkhole issue. He kept squawking about the fact that Mr. Mason paid too much for the property - which was $1. He seemed as though he was mocking a situation he helped to foster.
Not once, but twice, our city has inspected and approved this site for business use. The city knew from the beginning there could be problems with the site. After the first incident, the drainage pipes were still not put in place properly. The rush job done at that time is what led to the current situation. The city approved that reconstruction. The city could have also condemned this property after the second incident.
Paraphrasing, the mayor said the city should bear no burden for the expense of cleaning up this site. Seems if the city did, then we would no longer have a "nuisance" on our hands and the situation would finally be behind us. He also flatly stated he doesn't care how Mr. Mason gets it done, as long as he gets it done. Does that make sense? Shouldn't the mayor be happy Mr. Mason is going to be paying for a mess that the city contributed to?
Seems this issue has become a little too personal for our city's leaders. If you had condemned the property, then Mr. Mason would have never been able to purchase the property. The city would have been and should have been hauling the garbage off from this mess - that they helped to create - a long time ago.
Nothing should ever be built on that dumpsite again. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. Is the third time supposed to be the charm?
James Thomas Shell
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