An opinion for City Council and the people of Mount Vernon | #citycouncil


I am writing to discuss what council chose to act on and what they failed to act on, regarding the Edgewood Road project.

What City Council failed to act on:

City Council failed to contact the residents who might be directly impacted by the Edgewood Road project. They also failed to give these people comprehensive information about this project; denying them the ability to understand the scope of that impact.

What City Council chose to act on:

City Council chose to introduce the Edgewood Road proposal under an emergency designation. 

This action denied the people of Mount Vernon the opportunity to vote on the proposal. 

If eminent domain is intended to be used to accomplish this project, certain constitutional requirements need to be met. Because of what City Council chose to act on, and what they failed to act on; meeting these requirements may be problematic.

Where does this leave the people of Mount Vernon today? We are faced with a group of fellow residents who feel that they have been wronged. 

These folks are impassioned, intelligent, educated and motivated. If they are not yet organized, they soon will be.

A gentleman in a previous City Council meeting suggested that action might be taken.

What if this action becomes this gentleman and a hundred of his neighbors sending a team of attorneys down to City Hall? 

What if these attorneys file lawsuits, seek injunctions and setup all manner of legal roadblocks that might delay this project, or derail it altogether. Is this a possibility? 

I think so. A possibility made strong by what City Council chose to act on and what they failed to act on.

Going forward:

I would urge City Council to allow the people of Mount Vernon the opportunity to help decide what is best for the City of Mount Vernon. 

Who knows? 

Had the people of Mount Vernon been given the opportunity to make an informed decision and vote on this project; we might have passed it, and ultimately disappointed these folks anyway. Or we might have agreed with them. 

Either way, the people of Mount Vernon are more than willing to shoulder that responsibility.

There are nine people, including the Mayor, behind that City Council desk. There are more than 15,000 of ‘Us’ on the other side of that desk.

Thank you,

Rob Bertschy

Mount Vernon


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