When Less is Not More
Mike Davis of New City Alliance contacted us yesterday after his Letter to the Editor appeared in the print version of the Columbia Flier. He was disappointed at the edited version that appeared in print, which seems to be more about Kimco’s plans for the Wilde Lake Village Center, and less in support of Councilwoman Mary Kay Sigaty.
He explained that his intent was to respond to Mike Berla’s letter from August 5th, which Mike Davis, a longtime Wilde Lake resident who has followed the village center saga closely, took issue with.
(We remember Berla’s letter itself and were so amazed at how it misrepresented the facts, we’ve got to admit, we just rolled our eyes and moved on.)
So, Mike sent us both versions of his response, which appear below. Draw your own conclusions.
The silly season is surely upon us, for nothing could have been more silly than Mike Berla’s letter about Kimco’s proposal for Wilde Lake Village Center (Flier, August 5th). The premises set forth by Mr. Berla were so erroneous that no reasonable conclusion can be drawn from them.
First, Mary Kay Sigaty did not sponsor any legislation regarding the village centers. What she did do was to take a bill that was filed by Kimco and, working with the community and the other members of the County Council, help craft a bill that provided real and substantial community input into any significant redesign of a village center. This opportunity for community input did not exist before.
Second, Kimco has at least two hurdles to jump before any construction can begin. It must get approval from the village board’s architectural committee for covenant compliance, and it must satisfy the County’s requirements as set forth in the new legislation. Should Kimco choose to ignore community input in this process, it does so at its own peril.
Third, the process that Kimco and the Wilde Lake Village Board are going through right now reflects how much community input there really is under the new legislation. One evening session and three listening sessions have just been completed, providing residents the opportunity to give feedback, with more opportunities to come.
Finally, the proof must surely be in the pudding. While everyone may not like the current design that has been rendered by Kimco, there is universal agreement that Kimco did incorporate community input into that design.
Building a case against Mary Kay Sigaty, as Mr. Berla has attempted to do, is difficult because Ms. Sigaty has done a tremendous job of representing her constituents in Wilde Lake and the rest of her district. Maybe that’s why Mr. Berla must resort to twisting the facts to suit his purpose.
Michael W. Davis
Wilde Lake Village
UPDATE: last night, the Flier printed Mike’s letter in full in its online version. You can see it here. Thanks, Flier!