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OPINION LETTER SUMMARY POINTS
- Aldermen Gossett, Gard and Stokes . . . vote to protect the builder
- Mayor Guccione, Aldermen Kross and Hayes . . .assisted [homeowners] to come to a favorable compromise with the builder
DEAR NEW WENTZVILLIAN:
I would like to challenge residents of the City of Wentzville who are concerned with home values to spend a few minutes discovering how important the choice of who is about to be elected to the Board of Alderman can affect you and your families personally.
I admit that I never got involved in local politics and didn’t feel that it made much difference until one day Alderman NickGuccione knocked on my door while in his mayoral race.
He explained to me how there were over 2500 undeveloped lots in subdivisions all across the City of Wentzville and the hardships that residents were withstanding as the housing market had taken its very ugly downturn and now was slowly trying torecover. He told me how builders were coming into these properties and buying these lots for reduced values and then building homes of lesser value than was originally planned.
Mayor Guccione explained to me how the election for the Mayor and the Board of Alderman was very important because there were special interest groups that favored the builders and bankers that controlled what was left. What is worse is that these special interest groups contribute to the elections of Aldermen and these elected Aldermen typically vote favorably for these special interest groups.
Mayor Guccione wanted to change this and believes that it is his job to be the voice of the people so that that voice does not get lost.
My personal exposure to the Board of Alderman came when my subdivision was bought out by a large builder that also wanted to make some changes. Many of my neighbors and I went in front of the Board of Aldermen to challenge some of these changes. It became very clear that what I was told was true.
Mayor Nick Guccione, Alderman Cheryl Kross and Alderman Mike Hayes (Neither alderman worked for my ward) were clearly open to our concerns and assisted us to come to a favorable compromise with the builder. If not for these three and their dedication I do not believe that compromise would have been made. We believe that the compromise that was made will help us to uphold our property values now and in the future.
Our neighborhood has went in front of this board on several occasions and in my exposure to Alderman Stokes, Alderman Gossett and Alderman Gard it was clear that they vote to protect the builder in direct opposition to the residents' concerns. Not only in our situation but I have watched Alderman Stokes, Alderman Gossett and Alderman Gard consistently split the board vote in what looks to be in favor of the builders,commercial realtors, residential realtors and bankers interest.
The Builder’s proposals brought in front of the board are often lowering the standard of homes throughout the city of Wentzville. There has been talk that the special interest groups representing the builders want to change the standard of the streets building them cheaper with less rock.
This issue is crucial to all of us in Wentzville because the street life would be half of what it is now and the builders will be long gone. If we allow this it will be us the taxpayers that will have to pay to repair our city streets. If we choose wisely now we can use that revenue to raise our own families or our city but it will be our choice not these alderman.
This kind of philosophy affects our home values across the city. Think of the future when the builders are gone; what the face of Wentzville will be and what burdens and expense the City and its taxpayers will be left with.
So my challenge to you is spend a little time researching what I am reporting to you here. You can watch the Board of Aldermen Meetings online. You can contact the Mayor by email on the city web site. He is willing to be there for anyone who has any questions or concerns.
I ask you -- for all of us that live in Wentzville -- to please consider supporting Aldermen who want to work for you and will work with the other members of the board that I know are working for you, Alderman Kross and Alderman Hayes. Please do not re-elect the Aldermen who will not stand for the people that elect them. Please consider electing Linda Wright in the election against Alderman Rick Stokes and Robert Hussey in the election against Alderman Forrest Gossett on Tuesday, April 8th, 2014.
I now know that Local City Elections really affect my personal livelihood possibly even more so than National Elections. I think most people don’t vote because they don’t know much about it. That is what motivated me to write this challenge.
I know now it is important to stand up to what is wrong in government and you can right here. Right here in your own city. If we do elect a board for the people than if you need to go before the Board of Alderman about something that is important in your life or neighborhood you will have a place to turn. You do have the power to make that happen. You can VOTE. Please VOTE!
Most of all I appreciate the time you took to read and consider this, Linda Stevenson