Monday, June 13, 2005

Poor prospects on reimpowering the people?

Daniel at YoungPhillyPolitics reports on efforts to undo the damage done by the stealth legislation that removed citizen rights in many zoning and similar land-use decisions in their own neighborhoods. It was sneaked in as an amendment on an unrelated measure -- see previous story here -- and many legislators claim not to have realized what they were voting for. Anyway, Dan seems pessimistic that the counter-measure will pass; I hope he's wrong.

Update: here's some photos from a press conference at which some local figures and many concerned citizens gave speeches in support of Cohen's bill or silently expressed their dismay at being silenced.


Blogger Rep. Mark B. Cohen said...

While I would agree that my legislation restoring full appeal rights to rights to citizens and community organizations for zoning cases will not pass immediately, I am optimistic about its eventual passage.

Full appeal rights for citizens increases the value of homes in the City of Philadelphia. Which party represents most of the legislative districts in Philadelphia with the highest average home values? The Republicans.

Which party has led the charge which undermines home values by reducing appeal rights? The Republicans.

This is a contradiction which cannot be maintained over the long haul. The Republican Party has to stand for the maintenance of home values if it is to continue representing neighborhoods with many of the most valuable homes.

Citizen mobilization here, as elsewhere, is vital to protecting citizen interests. Together, legislators and concerned citizens can see that citizens and citizen organizations have a full toolbox to protect our neighborhoods.

10:53 PM  

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