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Published Wednesday, April 23, 2008 6:55 PM

Letters for April 24

Quality of life

Several times over the course of the 35 years we have lived in College Station, developers bemoaned the fact that College Station was so difficult to work with that the city might as well "bolt the doors," "shutter the windows," "pull in the welcome mat," or, more recently, "pull up the gangplank."

Nevertheless, College Station continues to grow and prosper as a desirable community for developers and residents alike. It seems that developers are more than willing to do business here and to live here themselves.

Part of the appeal of this community is zoning and fine neighborhoods. Quality-of-life factors that preserve neighborhoods are the same factors that allow developers to prosper.

Residents are not against development. Development that severely depreciates their homes, however, seems counter-productive to increasing the city's tax base. For example, the proposed Wal-Mart at the corner of Rock Prairie Road and Texas 6 would have dumped thousands of cars onto quiet, narrow residential streets.

Councilman Ron Gay told residents they should have bought the 60 acres at that corner themselves if they didn't want a Wal-Mart. Similar threats to neighborhoods across the city can arise at any time.

The city's vision is: "On behalf of the citizens of College Station, home of Texas A&M University, we will continue to promote and advance the community's quality of life."

We want to elect city council members who believe that vision. John Crompton, Dennis Maloney and Larry Stewart seem most aligned to that vision.

DOUG and

CHARLOTTE SLACK

College Station

Citizen concerns

Jim Maness (Eagle, April 22) characterized opponents of commercial development in College Station as terminally myopic.

I think Maness misunderstands the concerns of many citizens and, especially, the concerns of John Crompton, who is one of the best councilmen in our history.

The main problem that neighborhoods have is not commercial development, per se, but uncontrolled development that harms neighborhood integrity.

Maness, as president of the Nantucket Preservation Association, should understand this problem very well. I obtained a copy of his own neighborhood's association by-laws. These by-laws specifically exclude just about any commercial activity that exists, including long-term rentals. Big box stores have not yet threatened Nantucket, but perhaps some day they will. It seems that Maness wants the rest of us to tolerate commercial development that he cannot abide.

We need elect candidates for city council who understand the difference between harmful and beneficial development.

Please support Larry Stewart, John Crompton and Dennis Maloney.

DICK STARTZMAN

College Station

Choose integrity

When it comes time to cast your vote in the College Station City Council election, please choose integrity.

I remember that council incumbents Ron Gay and Chris Scotti were admonished by Judge J.D. Langley in lieu of formal criminal charges. Gay had the audacity to later state to the media that, "If we had violated the Open Meetings Act, they probably would have indicted us," Gay said. "There is no indictment. Nobody had any intent to circumvent the law. We would not have done it if we felt like we were wrong. We're sorry that it was controversial" (Eagle, Oct. 18, 2005).

The lack of indictment only indicates the grand jury did not find enough evidence to send the matter to trial.

The local level is the last level at which citizens' choices seem to really have an impact on daily life.In our local elections, each of us can really make a difference. We can choose to continue with politics as usual and can continue to allow politicians whose interests are clearly aligned with developers and businesses to decide the future of our community. Or we can say it's time to make a change for the better.

I hope our citizens choose to support integrity in our local government and cast their ballots to help ensure that the quality of life of our community's citizens are placed before the financial interests of political cronies.

I enthusiastically support John Crompton, Dennis Maloney and Larry Stewart in the upcoming election. I urge you to do the same.

It's about integrity, values and true public service.

BRUCE WICK

College Station





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