Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Media Borough Council: Democracy in Action if you know the right people!

I attended last Thursday night's council meeting to find that legislation was, in affect,rammed through despite recommendations from the councils own health board I fully support and welcome a community farmers market, but this conduct and mishandling of the basic forms of the legislative process has angered many.

How can Borough Council led by President, Peter Williams base a binding, long term decision for a farmers market on nothing more than a Mass Gathering Permit and comments from the floor?  There was no formal documentation,  business plan, contingency, etc.  Mind you, a much lesser request by Iron Hill for a one day beerfest included: placement sketches, impact assessments of the local business, security, MBA polling from Jackson St. to Galey St., and questions regarding  clean up.  The beerfest was even graciously donating proceeds to the Youth Center.  So, why wasnt the Farmer's Market held to the same standard?

Borough Council more or less rubber-stamped the approval for a farmers market after legitimate issues were brought up about health, parking, safety, location clean-up, etc.  The issue wasnt about obstruction; all members of council were in favor, but a request for further information that any group or organization would've been required to produce The Boroughs own Health Department  was denied a two-week extension by Council because Media's elected officials thought the participating groups, who would make up theFarmers Market”,  neededCertainty in order to make timely decisions So, basically, its not whats good for Media residents, its what good for special interest groups!
Perhaps this would have all been handled differently if the Council's Presidents wife, Adeline Ciannella , wasnt Thursday nights prime spokesperson and Farmers Market top advocate.  Council took Adeline's word, that she had met and talked to the local businesses regarding the market.  Apparently this wasnt discussed with Best Produce and Selenes Co-op, two businesses that have the most to gain/lose.  Both told me, that neither heard from anyone regarding participation in a Farmers market, let alone being invited.  One of which is threatening a letter to the Daily Times editor over the conduct. 
This is not only a double standard, but favoritism towards special interests.


  1. So you have to be the Council President's wife to get anything passed in Media? HA! Does this "advocacy" mean they profit from it? Hmmm? Double Standard?, yes...Conflict of Interest? BIG YES!!! Are the participating groups even from Media?

  2. I want a cartoonist to draw a picture of Williamson and his wife high-fiving after the vote went through, with Williamson saying "I win".

    I remember the Iron Hill fiasco, council was trying to get them to move their event to Sunday until Iron Hill said they would go elsewhere if they couldn't hold the event on a Saturday, then council woke up and saw the $$$ to the Youth Center walking away - Seriously, who in their right mind would have a beer event on a sunday?. In addition to all the requirements you listed, I think half the Iron Hill staff had to subject to DNA samples and TSA clearance, or at least it seemed that way for a simple event that I tend to enjoy every year. By comparison, you're onto something, this is pathetic.

    Can someone tell me if someone on council is connected to that "Cash for Gold" shop on Baltimore Pike? If council rubberstamps applications for those in their extended family, certainly it has to explain the gaudy neon 'cash for gold' sign in that shop!

  3. Iron Hill is a single business. The beer festival is a private event involving great beer, drunk people, and the closing of the busiest area of Media on a weekend. The proposed farmers market (located at the fringe of downtown Media on a weekday) is a community venue designed to promote fresh and wholesome living, social gathering, and local trade - the glue of daily society found universally throughout the globe and throughout the history of civilization. These two events are not the same and should be treated according to their impact (on local businesses, residents, Borough departments, and the community as a whole).

    As for special interest groups, I would promote open community building over private enterprise any day. Besides, America is ruled by special interest groups on both sides of the aisle. Nothing new there. But maybe the "keep it a parking lot because I don't want to walk an extra block" people should band together to fight this terrible idea? Maybe the health board should be brought in to "regulate" the produce sold there? Maybe there should be some sort of tax? Yes! More taxes! Come on guys. Decide what you are "for" and stick with it. It's so easy to hate, but so hard to work together when sound ideas are met with this sort of rhetoric.

  4. I was wondering when one of those social-justice types would show up - at least give us a name while you're at it! By the way, that "glue" seems a little too toxic to me, unless, of course, it was fairly traded, then we can all hold hands and take pride in the justice for the ridiculous cost.

    Same event, just different backers. As this was council president lerch's pet project, OF COURSE it was rushed through. Riddle me this - why even bother having boards in this town if you're going to bypass them? Why not come out and openly admit that their opinions and/or advice don't matter to this towns leaders?

    This town has been ruled by a special interest group for years - don't use the excuse just so you can get corn on State Street for 35 cents a piece more than you can at Acme.

  5. I hear that the Farmers' Market will also be selling flowers. Can't they just supply their produsts to our existing produce & floral merchants and that fact be advertised & supported so as not to negatively impact on our exisisting tax paying merchants????

    I also do not think we should have less available parking. How much have we spent on how many studies about parking?!

    I would think some of our elected officials would be against the farmers' market as proposed & especially at that location. I'm disappointed in ALL of Council over this.

    POINT - Council should support the selling of the farmers' goods NOT the establishment of this market.

    Shame on ANY Council member who thinks their individual ideas/passions deserves a green light without the proper process being followed. This is not just about Mr. & Mrs. Williamson though I do believe the Council President is elected to run the meetings & such, NOT to have any higher power or more important vote/say than the others serving on Council or to set the pace on what direction the town heads.

    The residents of the Boro elected Council to act in the best interest of the community, NOT themselves. At least that's how I vote. Maybe that's part of the reason for some of the mess we sometimes find ourselves in. Too many Media residents vote for their friends & neighbors and NOT for those best prepared to do the job of being our elected officals.

    That's why when I run for Council, not as a D or R but as an I, I will not forget why I ran & who I represent.

  6. Runs as an independent in a small borough, that almost makes sense. Let me guess, you won't run as a R because George W. Bush said the word "Media" once? Schmuck.

  7. I'd run as an Independent because I'd plan on representing ALL the residents, business onwers/operators and property owners REGARDLESS of how they're registered. Just like I vote. For the person, NOT the party.

  8. Go ahead, throw your vote away!!! BWAAA HAAA HAA HAAAA HAAA. independant route doesn't work, just ask Paul R about that route!

  9. Paul R! The reason he was not elected as an I is that he would have still been the same crappy elected official!! He did as he was told to as a D & when he started going down his own power-tripping path, the D's had enough of him & since they couldn't pull him back & the R's would touch him, he ran as an I.

    Me on the otherhand, when I run as an I, I would strive to act in the best interest of ALL the community. Except Frank D that is, his interests have been served here in our little Borough for way too many years now.

  10. Anon, I'm planning on running for King of England next year, thining about running under the Labor Party but the Independent route seems attractive, too. Figure I'll easily win as "Anonymous" just like yourself.