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Letter to the Editor

Resident finds city irresponsible

March 16, 2011 - Dear Editor,

Since Trevor Keiser and I both recorded the meeting, I was wondering if The Clarkston News was going to report on the tone, if not the details, of what happened.

While it was obvious that Mr. Cousens was trying to illicit certain responses and actions from the commission. I was surprised they almost willingly did.

The city manager thought he had hand delivered a critical document to Mr. Cousens but was not sure when and apparently had no notes or other verification that he did.

No one other than Mr. Cousens seemed to have any information on how his Permit to Build was granted or what if any restrictions were part of the permit, something that is a matter of law and for which there are clearly defined requirements.

There must have been meeting minutes for the commission that set the alleged restrictions but no one mentioned that and without a properly scheduled public meeting, quorum of the members present, and approved minutes, no decision could have been made or be defendable. Mr. Cousens offered to re-apply for a Certificate of Appropriateness but the city manager wasn't sure when he would be able to find the application even when a city council member offered to pick it up and deliver it.

And then there is the one member of the commission who stated Mr. Cousens is not the kind of person that we want living here. If Mr. Cousens had been anything other than a middle-aged, white guy, this would have been an instant multi-million dollar discrimination law suit in the Federal Courts.

In the end, it seemed they wanted the resident to be responsible for correcting the city's mistakes and lack of information.

The commission wants the homeowner to reapply and provide all supporting information for a building that is already built, apparently with the permission and permit from the city. If the commission really wants to know what was built and if it is appropriate, all they would have to do is walk down the street and look.

It seems Clarkston is doing its best to compete with the antics of our neighboring government. Since we charge higher taxes, I guess we have the obligation of being even more inept than they are.

Cory Johnston


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