Wednesday, March 29, 2017

The Cary Pit--March 29, 2017

There was an unusual amount of noise coming from this pit this morning. So I decided to use the drone to take a look.

After getting clearance from the Lake in the Hills Airport, I brought the drone 150 feet over the Fox Trails subdivision and took a look. They are moving dirt near the berm. But, at this altitude, you can get a nice glimpse of what lies next door to Fox Trails.

Monday, March 20, 2017

"Positively" Cary? What does that even mean?

When I first saw the signs popping up all over town with Dudek’s name on them declaring to be “Positively Cary,” I laughed out loud. Positively Cary?  What does that actually mean?

Grammatically speaking, “positively” used in this way means true. Like this is “definitely” Cary.  (I know what they are actually trying to say here, but hey, I’m a word nerd).

And anything that Duane “Rick” Dudek is associated with is “positively” not what I want to see in Cary.

Of course I am speaking from the experience of the Meyer Material issue that has been plaguing Fox Trails now for nearly 10 years—longer if you count the original Algonquin operation, actually.  Dudek is the only trustee who has been here from the time Meyer was granted a conditional use permit in 2008.

In fact, Dudek voted “positively” for Meyer back in 2008.

Although, apparently, he sometimes forgets that.

Case in point:  During the September 6, 2016 meeting, Dudek had the audacity to suggest that it was the fault of the Fox Trails residents to have moved into the neighborhood in the first place. “They sold over 130 homes,” he said, “even though there was something going on in their backyard….I think that’s pretty important to recognize.” This is coming from someone who was there in 2008 and voted “yes” for the conditional use permit for Meyer. He knew then (and apparently had forgotten by 2016) that the land adjacent to the north section of Fox Trails was zoned residential and there was a “no mining clause” on that parcel of land.

It was Jeff Kraus who pointed out that residents who bought houses knew the land had been zoned differently.  “The land wasn’t zoned mining,” Kraus stated. “So those homeowners up there bought it thinking it was agriculture behind them, not mining.”

And how did Dudek respond? Remember, he was there in 2008 and he voted to grant Meyer a conditional use permit to change the zoning. He turned to Kraus and asked, “How do we know that, Jeff?”

Was he being “positively” forgetful that he voted to change the zoning on that land? He must have forgotten because in 2016 he "positively" said in an interview "it was a crappy agreement." A "crappy agreement" that he "positively" voted for.

Not only that, over the course of his tenure as Trustee, he has made some “positively” puzzling comments regarding Meyer Material and the Fox Trails neighborhood.

During a Village Board meeting in July of 2015, for example, Dudek stated publicly that “There has not been one complaint” about the gravel pit. He must not have ever read this blog or heard the dozens of residents who had been coming to meetings or writing the Board to complain about the gravel pit. One resident at the time said at a meeting that it was “like the Indy 500 in my back yard.” Yep, Dudek “positively” didn’t hear that one.

The fact is that it was “positively” Dudek who started the ball rolling on getting Meyer a waiver to resubmit a plan to the Village before the mandated one-year “cooling off” period. He read a prepared statement in June of 2016 wanting Meyer to be reconsidered.

I guess he was “positively” sure Meyer hadn’t been treated fairly in the proceeding meetings and needed another chance. In fact, he "positively" referred to Meyer as a "corporate citizen" who needed to be "extended the courtesy" of a new hearing.  

So now Dudek is running on a platform that suggests he has been a "positive" influence in Cary. Ask Fox Trails residents and they will tell you a different story.

I have seen resident concerns "positively" dismissed.

I have seen the democratic process "positively" shirked in favor of the desires of a corporation.

I have seen Fox Trails residents "positively" demeaned and lectured to.

I have seen a corporation that is part of a multinational conglomerate "positively" treated better than the tax payers.

Of one thing I am positive: I will “positively” not be voting for that slate of candidates on April 4. “Positively Cary” means “Positively Dudek.”

No thanks.  I’ve seen how that has worked out for the last 10 years.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

A little about Mark Kownick and "Integrity"

The elections in Cary are right around the corner.

And all over the village are signs for Mark Kownick that ironically proclaim him to be the candidate of integrity. On his website, he "fact checks" the whole Meyer Material issue and, as usual dismisses and undermines the actual facts in regard to Meyer Material.

On that page, he takes credit for the mining agreement and paints it with such positivity that anyone who has attended the meetings within the last year would find laughable.

Here is what Mark Kownick doesn't say on that page:

  • When Meyer approached the Zoning Board with a request for an extension, the Zoning Board voted it down in February of 2016
  • As a result, Mark Kownick demoted the Chairman of the Zoning Board, Joe Tournier, and didn't inform the other trustees of this action
  • When the Meyer Material petition went to the Village Board in May of last year, it was voted down
  • The Mayor and several other Village Trustees (Dudek and Chapman, in particular) then worked to give Meyer a waiver to re-present a plan to the Village despite the mandatory one-year waiting period. That waiver was granted in October of 2016 with the Kownick making the tie-breaking vote to allow the waiver
  • The ZPA meeting for the new Meyer petition was scheduled before that waiver was granted
  • The new agreement says that the $1.5 million in the land conservancy fund that Meyer was required to fund no longer needs to be used by the Village for the land after Meyer stops mining 

During this whole process, the Mayor was instrumental in subverting the democratic process. He so wanted Meyer to continue mining that he worked to get that waiver in place and get a Village Board vote as quickly as possible before this Village election.

During this whole process, every meeting involving Meyer Material was highlighted in the Cary News blast.

Except one.

That's right: this mayor who boasts of "integrity" oversaw an administration that did not, for the first time, publicly announce the meeting for the Meyer vote in its weekly news blast.  As a result,  few people came to denounce the plan. In fact, more Meyer employees were there to talk about how great Meyer Material is.

And, as usual, the Mayor voted for Meyer and now takes credit for it on his website.

So much for integrity.