“Someone needs to explain to us why 5”

(Latest post on such topics as Neighborhoods, Southside, Affordable Housing)

At the last City Council meeting the indefatigable Gadfly #1 — Stephen Antalics — did his “thing” (as we used to say) on the definition of “family” again, the definition that permits developers to load 5 students into a house.

Gadfly sardonically remarked that Stephen is like the Flying Dutchman — the legendary ghost ship that can never make port and is doomed to sail the oceans forever — on this issue.

El primo Gadfly raised this issue at least as early as 2012, and this Gadfly has heard him raise it at least a half-dozen times in his Council attendances in the last 18 months.

“After extensive research into the matter,” said the Ur-Gadfly, “Bethlehem may be the only college community in the state allowing five unrelated students to be classified as a family.”

Which is why we are so appealing to developers.

“The key to good community is the single family.”

No denying that.

“Someone needs to explain to us why 5.”

No denying that.

“It becomes incumbent upon you on Council to get an answer for us.”

Lay it on, Stephen.

“What’s happening is contrary to the welfare of the Southside.”

No denying that.

“Can you help us to get an answer?”

Aiii, here’s the rub.

Now the solution to affordable housing etc. on the Southside may be more complicated than Stephen says.

Gadfly refers you to the recent post by the wise Anna Smith, a post that should be read again for sure.

That’s not the point on which Gadfly would like to focus here (forcing himself, Tony, to avoid ending with a preposition!).

The point on which Gadfly would like to focus is communication — two-way communication.

There seems to be no mechanism to receive answers to questions.

Gadfly has posed some questions in regard to the Polk Street Garage that will not be answered.

There seems to be no mechanism to receive answers to questions.

Stephen’s “Someone needs to explain to us why 5” will hang in the air endlessly.

Gadfly feels a modest proposal coming on.

One thought on ““Someone needs to explain to us why 5”

  1. One of the most frustrating aspects of being an interested citizen, or Gadfly, is that most elected officials are very good at promoting citizen participation and even more expert at ignoring those who dare to participate! 

    Like

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