Editor’s note: This is the first of a pair of editorials Walden Pond resident Paul Schneider asked to write, pointing out more information he wanted to share about the Marvin park purchase. The second will run next week.
I read with interest the article written by Mark DiBiasio in the Jan. 28-Feb. 3 issue of the Union County Weekly reporting on the how the Marvin Village Council is doing such a fine job in moving forward with their ill-advised plan to put a public park, not in Marvin, but in the middle of a well established nearby residential community.
The article fails to mention a few pertinent facts. The reason the price of the property came down from 1.1 million to $950,000 is because the property could not appraise for 1.1 million. It doesn’t perc.
Help from the State in the form of a $475,000 (parks) grant is highly unlikely. It’s my understanding the fund for 2011 may be only $1,500,000. Will they be getting 1/3 of the total statewide allocation when over 100 other communities are vying for money as well? If they don’t get the grant, maybe they’ll just raise taxes to cover the shortfall. Or, maybe they’ll put a few more ordinances on the books and collect fines from Marvin residents to make up the difference? That’s not a stretch. I witnessed them talking about new ordinances (during town meetings) and who would get the revenue from the fines levied – Marvin or Union County.
Your Marvin Village Council members and the article failed to mention that the State House of Representatives has a bill in the Judiciary Committee, HR9, to place a moratorium on all forced annexations. The forced annexation of 1,455 properties that Marvin is embroiled in, which would increase the number of taxable properties by 129.2 percent, is in the courts right now and, when the moratorium goes into effect, any expected new tax revenue will no longer be available to use in the purchase, improvement, on-going maintenance or securing of the proposed park. Can anyone say higher taxes for Marvin residents? They don’t need any of this money if they are capable of seeing the wisdom of abandoning the park plan.
Here’s a short review of the personnel changes over the past few months in the Marvin Town Hall.
*Village Mayor resigns
*Village Administrator’s contract not renewed. A fantastic Village asset yet she’s out.
*Fern Shubert is hired as Village Administrator, she’s now gone.
*Christine leaves her job as Finance Officer. Another conscientious person out.
*Terri Patton (Councilwoman) gets $45,000 + benefits job as Village Administrator.
*Kim Rogers (Union County Commissioner) gets the job of Village Finance Director.
Excessive turnover, high paying jobs to insiders and cronyism are now the norm in the sleepy little gem of a ‘paper town’ called Marvin. A former early Mayor of Marvin told me that he considered the dealings and wanton annexation land-grab lustings of the current Council “a perversion of the original intentions of the Marvin Village incorporation”. It’s the opposite of why Marvin incorporated in 1997”. In my view, it’s sad to see the original intentions of honest, hardworking and right-minded people thrown to the curb like this.
Unincorporated Union County