Two parties who should have been taking the lead on notifying the neighborhoods most affected by a new Sulphur Dell ballpark have done very little to lead.
The only word I have received from our council member, Erica Gilmore, was an email sent last night (a little over 12 hours before the meeting convenes at Farmers' Market). The email was nothing but a cut and paste job of last week's Metro Planning announcement, which she could have cut and paste and sent out last week. Waiting for developing news on the project before emailing constituents is one thing, but dragging her feet on an announcement that was nothing but week-old cut and paste is irresponsible in light of the fact that this is a community meeting on a project that she has consistently touted in communications before.
|Like gangbusters in August email blast
In August, no more than 24 hours after the news media broke the story and nearly 3 weeks before the Mayor officially unveiled his plan for Sulphur Dell, CM Gilmore sent out a "media advisory" email to her list declaring her unequivocal, unqualified support for a ballpark that had not been expressed in plan, design or community impact yet. In that declaration, she also speculated that all of her constituents were "thrilled" with the idea. Not that we were open to it. Not that we were willing to listen and provide feedback. Not even that many were thrilled but that she hoped that those who were unsure might hop on board after considering the plans. No. She took it upon herself to speak for us as if she had actually polled us (I have not seen a survey yet). She shot from the hip in August, despite the fact that she has at least one neighborhood association that remains unclear whether it supports a Sulphur Dell ballpark.
The point I am trying to make is that CM Gilmore came out with announcements of support like a house afire, and she presumed to speak for the community at that time. Now that community meetings are being held where there might actually be popular reactions to the plan she supports, she is late with her announcements to the community. I have talked to at least two other constituents since I got the email who have heard nothing from CM Gilmore about this meeting.
The second party who should have been communicating today's event to the neighborhoods is the Mayor's Office of Neighborhoods. Outside of 2 or 3 tweets on the subject, they have done nothing that I am aware of to communicate the Sulphur Dell community meeting. I cannot even find any news on their static website. And yet, this is the Mayor's initiative. The fact that MOON would drop the ball on this means either that they do not care about neighborhoods or that they are more concerned to control the community reaction by discouraging citizen attendance, which still means that they do not care about the neighborhoods.
The poor communication by Metro officials on today's community meeting is disgraceful. I would not be surprised if I walked into a room full of developers, bureaucrats, politicos and the flacks that support them. That may be how Mayor Dean wants it: as undemocratic and as exclusive as possible.