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Thread: The Never Ending Stupid Things Said at Public Hearings Thread

  1. #1
    Cyburbian TOFB's avatar
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    The Never Ending Stupid Things Said at Public Hearings Thread

    I was recently told at a hearing that my recommendation was trying to tell the Commission how to vote. OH, REALLY?

    What dumb things have you heard at public hearings?

  2. #2
    Cyburbian btrage's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by TOFB View post
    I was recently told at a hearing that my recommendation was trying to tell the Commission how to vote. OH, REALLY?

    What dumb things have you heard at public hearings?
    Yeah.....I've had applicants tell me that I'm trying to influence the Commission's decision.

    I'm like........yes, that's why they hired me.

  3. #3
    Cyburbian mike gurnee's avatar
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    "I work for the prison, and would lose my job if I associated with inmates' families. These proposed apartments would attract some of those families. Being next door to them, I would lose my job."

    Conversley, what dumb things have YOU said at public hearings? Fortunately, I get to edit the minutes.

  4. #4
    Super Moderator luckless pedestrian's avatar
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    I wish I was kidding - count the ironic statements

    "I am against any ordinance that allows wireless communication towers, though I run a Mennonite bookstore online that I take orders with on my cellphone"

  5. #5
    Unfrozen Caveman Planner mendelman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by luckless pedestrian View post
    "I am against any ordinance that allows wireless communication towers, though I run a Mennonite bookstore online that I take orders with on my cellphone"
    Oh my...that one is amazing!

    I can't think of any right now. I'll get back to you.
    I'm sorry. Is my bias showing?

    The ends can justify the means.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian Joe Iliff's avatar
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    The most recent thing I can think of is the applicant who said, "Don't treat me like a developer." Thought that was very strange. The city approves the applications of developers. That's what makes them developers. But he evidently didn't want to be treated that way.
    JOE ILIFF
    ________________________________________________________________________
    Debt is normal . . . Be weird!
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    "Rarely do we find men who willingly engage in hard, solid thinking. There is an almost universal quest for easy answers and half-baked solutions. Nothing pains some people more than having to think."
    Martin Luther King, Jr.

  7. #7
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    Not a public hearing, but something I heard on the radio. NPR was doing a show on railroads in the state. The discussion turned to rails with trails. A caller expressed concern that trails could not be located next to high speed rail corridors because of concerns that people would be sucked under the train. The guest's response: "Well, I can comment on being sucked by a train..."
    Anyone want to adopt a dog?

  8. #8
    Cyburbian boiker's avatar
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    Commissioner: "I have a financial relationship with the neighbor adjacent to the project who is objecting. But I can perform my duties as an impartial commissioner."

    City Atty: -------

    Commissioner: "I object with the proposed xxxx and I have a letter from the property owner objecting to it too." (Commissioner proceeds to vote against the project due to issue xxxx.
    Dude, I'm cheesing so hard right now.

  9. #9
    Cyburbian Otis's avatar
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    Commissioner: "Why can't they just make a contribution to a non-profit if they want to get a variance? It would be a win-win."

    Me: "Because that would amount to buying a variance, would allow rich people to ignore the zoning ordinance, discriminate against people who can't afford to make a payment, and be against state law."

    Commissioner: "Well, there's something wrong with the system then."

    Me:

    This was on live television during a variance hearing.

  10. #10
    Cyburbian Seabishop's avatar
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    Commissioner: "Let's face it, this type of housing* would just lead to . . . single mothers!"

    *market rate townhouses.

  11. #11
    Cyburbian Coragus's avatar
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    1. A planning commissioner for a township that I consulted for said, in response to demonstrated need for more moderately priced housing, "If people don't make enough, they shouldn't live in ______ Township."

    2. At a public input session for a county master plan for a county I used to work for, a township supervisor (different township) said that their plan for dealing with the upcoming elderly population was to wait for them all to die. Although it was obvious that he said this as a joke, I can verify that no one on our staff or on the planning commission, or any other guest, laughed.
    What do you mean I can't plan? My SimCity has 200,000 people with a 99% happiness rating!

  12. #12
    After a lengthy and rather well-spoken argument against a proposed subdivision* the speaker, whose property abutted the subdivision, concluded with something to the effect of "I was in the Air Force for 40 years and I know for a fact that that interstate right next to that proposed subdivision is used to transport spent nuclear fuel. Imagine the guilt you would feel if you approved this subdivision and there was a nuclear fuel accident right there. All those deaths would be on your consciences."



    Silence, even from those who had been vigorously shaking their heads in agreement.




    *Affordable housing
    Batter up!

  13. #13
    Cyburbian TexanOkie's avatar
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    In our recent SmartCode charrette, after conducting a visual preference survey and displaying the results, one of the attendees said, "I don't think the people of [my town] want that kind of density and development." We weren't making any recommendations or anything! This dude was sitting there as the survey was being talked about and conducted, and we only put up numbers for each answer. Apparently they did/do want that kind of density and development, moron - you just saw them vote for it.

  14. #14
    Cyburbian SGB's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Coragus View post
    1. A planning commissioner for a township that I consulted for said, in response to demonstrated need for more moderately priced housing, "If people don't make enough, they shouldn't live in ______ Township."
    A similar quote from a former Town Board member: "We have plenty of affordable housing for people that work here in ________; it's called ________, _________, _______, and ________. [surrounding municipalities.]"
    All these years the people said he’s actin’ like a kid.
    He did not know he could not fly, so he did.
    - - Guy Clark, "The Cape"

  15. #15
    Cyburbian Tom R's avatar
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    dumb things

    We had a township trustee say that he didn't think that sidewalks on both sides of a subdivision's streets were necessary, especially since the houses were to be marketed to over 55 people. HUH????
    WALSTIB

  16. #16
    Cyburbian Zoning Goddess's avatar
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    A county commissioner, in the middle of a land use change hearing: "Ya cain't tell a man what to do with his own land". (Tell that to the state of FL...)

    Same county, different commissioner, different case, another land use change hearing: "I know it's against the Comp Plan, but I'm going to make a motion to approve." (Sure, get THAT on the record, and send it to the state for review...)

    Years ago, an opponent of a proposed subdivision next to his: "Our homes are valued at over half a million dollars. These proposed homes won't be worth more than $300,000. We don't want to live next to trash."

  17. #17
    Cyburbian Masswich's avatar
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    "[Insert name of person or government agency] is telling us to have 'Smart Growth'. Well, we already have Smart Growth and we don't want any more of it..."

    Not entirely false, mostly a bad attitude about any change...

    Also, the "we are the most densely populated place in the country" (always calculated some strange way) or "we're at a 'tipping point' and we need to stop new development." Malcolm Gladwell gets thrown around a lot.

  18. #18
    Cyburbian
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    The old German Lady

    We had an older German Lady (and I use the term "lady" loosely) who liked to get likkered up and come to the planning commission meetings in a small, rural township where I worked. You knew the booze was kicking in when she'd start mumbling in german. Once she got going, she'd interject her opinion (in german, of course) without regard to the two minute rule, Roberts Rules of Order, or any other rules. Every once in a while, she'd wad up the agenda and whip it at the Chairman of the Commission. On one particularly boozy night, she actually threw a chair. (Topic of Discussion: Gravel Pits) Thankfully the Cop Shop was on the other side of the wall; they escorted her to their side and called her neighbor to pick her up. And they say planning is boring....

  19. #19
    Cyburbian Richmond Jake's avatar
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    Bump

    Testimony this week during a public hearing: "I don't see how a family can live in a house on a quarter-acre lot." The same person: "They'll be building docks for their boats to access the lake," by the person who has a dock on the lake.
    Annoyingly insensitive

  20. #20
    Cyburbian otterpop's avatar
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    Seems like I've heard this line of reasoning from a resident just about every time a subdivision is proposed next to theirs and a common road will be shared: If you approve this subdivision those new residents will be racing down the street endangering our kids and throwing their garbage out of their cars.

    Damn, we thought we could pull a fast one and you caught us. Yes, the developer's target demographic will be people who speed, love to run over children and dogs and litter just before they get or leave home.
    "I am very good at reading women, but I get into trouble for using the Braille method."

    ~ Otterpop ~

  21. #21
    Cyburbian TOFB's avatar
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    My all time favorite was when a driver's license facility was going to be built in my neighborhood and people complained that people would be taking their driver's test on our streets. Like that's the time someone is going to drive recklessly

  22. #22
    Cyburbian The Terminator's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by TOFB View post
    My all time favorite was when a driver's license facility was going to be built in my neighborhood and people complained that people would be taking their driver's test on our streets. Like that's the time someone is going to drive recklessly
    I once got cited for Reckless (or should I say Wreckless because nothing got f**ed up) for doing a rolling stop through a stop sign in The Bronx. I actually had to go down to Bronx County Court on 161st St and plead my case. The Cop didnt show up and the judge dismissed it. It was on the 30th of the month and the big stupid cop needed to make his quota so I got a criminal summons instead of a fine.

    At a public hearing before a village board on a proposed affordable, 55+ apartmemt complex (that was already reccomended for approval by the planning board) in the Village of Buchanan, NY someone got up and said "I am worried about this being marketed in the Spanish papers, Im worried about the minorities coming in from New York City. They don't share our values and should not be living in or village"

  23. #23
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by The Terminator View post
    someone got up and said "I am worried about this being marketed in the Spanish papers, Im worried about the minorities coming in from New York City. They don't share our values and should not be living in or village"
    Usually, when I hear this kind of thing it's done more with a dog whistle (e.g. "we don't want this rental property because the occupants probably won't have the same pride in ownership that local landowners do..."), but yeah. And you wonder how Trump is able to get supporters
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

  24. #24
    Unfrozen Caveman Planner mendelman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    Usually, when I hear this kind of thing it's done more with a dog whistle (e.g. "we don't want this rental property because the occupants probably won't have the same pride in ownership that local landowners do..."), but yeah. And you wonder how Trump is able to get supporters
    Related:

    How many of your zoning/property maintenance violations you send are to owner/occupied properties?
    I'm sorry. Is my bias showing?

    The ends can justify the means.

  25. #25
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by mendelman View post
    Related:

    How many of your zoning/property maintenance violations you send are to owner/occupied properties?
    There was a political push several years ago to start documenting how many and what percentage of violations were concerning rental properties. Yes there are many times more violations on owner/occupied properties.
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

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