Another story in the Plain Dealer announcing yet another unilateral decision, without oversight, regarding the mega-development downtown, MedMart. ?This time, the decision, ?yet again announced through the Plain Dealer, is to move the site, yet again, to another spot downtown.
When I saw the story, I called the reporter, Laura Johnston, to comment as a candidate for the county council district that will include downtown, District 7. ?Laura seemed highly disinterested in taking comment from a candidate who will, if elected, represent the exact spot on which the MedMart will sit. ?I don’t understand why Laura doesn’t seek comment from candidates seeking the seat which will host this site.
Was Issue 6, which the Plain Dealer is currently patting itself on the back for passing, specifically created to provide this kind of oversight over such development deals? ?Or to defeat it? ?I am very concerned that this deal is being rushed through, in advance of an election, with the collusion of elected officials whose offices will no longer exist, some of whom may soon be in jail, specifically to defeat the oversight which Issue 6 creates. ?The story notes the developer will break ground in October this year, less than a month before the new council is elected, and less than 3 months before the elected officials currently negotiating the deal are shown the door by law.
This deal will certainly face scrutiny in January, 2011, whether MMPI, the developer, wants that scrutiny or not, from an elected county executive, and an elected county council, of which I intend to be a member. ?No such scrutiny exists today. ?And it’s a real shame that the PD decides to ignore that reality.