Saturday, August 19, 2017

Close HP Country Club in 2018

The Park District of Highland Park is 101% right to close the HPCC in 2018 and naturalize the majority of the Flood Plain property. The Highland Park City Council should work along side the Park District by returning the HPCC lands back to a natural habitat. Citizens do not need to subsidize a second municipal golf course anymore for a very few. Also, with the need to enhance the natural lands to soak up storm water this site can be complementary to a future storm water solution.

In 1993 one of my first votes on the City Council was to purchase the HPCC to protect it from a contract developer (Spatz) from building 100's of homes and covering it with cement and hard structures. This property is largely in the flood way, not just the flood plain. That means it not only stores water, it moves south and flows through it. Past leaders like Mayors Dan Pierce and Ray Geraci beat the drums of preservation for this property. Ray Geraci and I led a group called Save Open Space (SOS) to retain this land unencumbered from structures. It was not about saving a golf course although the revenues of the 1990's did pay off about a 100k a year of the 700k of debt service HP citizens paid off through 2013. As the golf business softened, being in an area of a saturated golf market and a constant need for capital improvements, very little if any golf revenues helped relieve the 10 million dollar debt the citizens encumbered. The bonds were totally paid off as of 2013.

In support of reduction of flood waters along the Skokie River and as a tenured 10 year Councilman, in 2003 I led efforts to naturalize the HPCC and close the golf course. We worked with the LCFPD, Park District, and IDNR to purchase the adjacent "38 acres" and combine all the HPCC property into conservation easements that would withstand time and future political pressures to cash in on open lands. With the support of Dan Pierce we gathered landscape architects, engineers and governments to come up with a naturalization plan that would retain more water, allow better flows, and provide a great natural habitat that could be enjoyed by our citizens. Bike paths, creek channels, tall grasses and a critter rich environment. Because of politics and the complexity of the situation this initiative sizzled out at that time.

The time has come to close the golf course when the new sunset course reopens. We need to reach out to the county, state and federal governments for funding to help enhance our floodway/floodplain Skokie River corridor. The City should not demand money for this property from the Park District since the citizens have already paid 10 million for its purchase once. If there is a need to make a DEAL then look at property to trade but do not demand more that what will help both our city and park district operations. After all, it all gets levied on all the same citizens of Highland Park.

There is no them and us, it is only US. I am hopeful that our Mayor Nancy Rotering and President Brian Kaplan will work TOGETHER. Past City Council's I was part of  worked well with the Park District accomplishing the Aqua Park, new Fredrickson roadway, new fire station, 38 acres, Founders Park and several land trades for $1 like Moraine Park. This is not a deal between advisories, It simply should be an exercise to create a better community and allocate resources to the best management team and government.     

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Diamond Tee Dump #5 Hope was buried in Charlottesville.

My observations of Diamond Tee over the past seven Presidential months of his hate, bullying and crazy antics really have amplified my emotions from simple concern to terrifying reality and projections. His continued dog whistle message to the white supremacists, Nazis and just pissed off people has been comforting to their terrorist burn it down cause. And make no mistake that this man that just ran over that lady in Charlottesville is a TERRORIST. Not a Christian Terrorist or an Islamic Terrorist, Just a TERRORIST. Whether you blow up or run your car into a crowd in Paris, London, or Charlottesville it is a terrorist act.

There can be no tolerance for Nazis, the KKK, and all White Supremacists. They hate Jews, Blacks, Hispanics, Immigrants, Gays, and strong women. They are fascists and support the elimination of people that are not like them. Yes, they want to kill us and exterminate our people. How Double Down Donnie can cuddle the White Supremacists and equate them with people protesting fascism and hate screams his madness. Diamond Tee should understand that a huge majority of Americans were represented within the protests against the White Supremacists, not just the liberal left. Most Conservatives as well do not tolerate hate and will oppose his disgraceful direction. I have never seen any President fan the flames of hate and continue to hammer in a wedge throughout this country like Trump. Republicans need to divorce themselves from these hateful people and need to unite with Democrats against Hate, Oppression, and the destruction of our values.

Trumps words this afternoon were shameful, disgusting, and should be condemned by every member of Congress. But besides the Democrats and a few republicans, they will continue to remain silent because of their deal with the hateful devils that have saturated the politics of our day. The bombardment of hate by Diamond Tee that is directed at Women, Hispanics, Gays, Immigrants, Muslims, Mexicans, Judges, and anybody that disagrees with him has boiled over his administrations walls and is creeping into our homes and communities.

He continues to redefine all things with bombastic definitions. Diamond Tee does not care what the majority of Americans think about his statements. After all he won the Presidency so the people that voted for him hold the full weight of his mission of hate. He did not hide his mission and beliefs prior to his election people! The blood and the degradation of our democracy and country values falls on his supporters heads and unfortunately ours as well. The least supporters that voted for him can do is speak out against his actions of hate and turn against Trump in a strong and assertive manner.

Any hope that Diamond Tee would come around and start to support our good values is dead and buried. Our only hope is to have him removed from office. His support of the angry far right neo Nazis and want to be Killers is clear and his dog whistle to them is now been heard by all. Resist, Fight, and lets overcome this moment and find ways to unite with positive and constructive agendas that will again bring peace and sanity to our nation. To ignore this any further without action could be catastrophic. #ItsBad