NORFOLK — Regarding the mass annexation that is to take place in Norfolk, I would like to express some concerns as to how this is being handled by the city council and mayor.

First, everyone who spoke at the council meeting held Sept. 7 thought the council and mayor seemed uninterested, with most barely looking up from whatever it was that they were doing. At the very least, they could have kept their obvious contempt for the people there, to themselves and showed some sort of interest in what was being said. As for any questions and concerns being addressed, mostly what was offered was a word salad, without any real answers and it appeared as if not one of the members or officials present were educated or informed on the matter at hand.

The biggest concern for everyone should be the fact that on Sept. 1, there was an article in the Norfolk Daily News in which the city engineer announced that it would be using $3.25 million for street improvements in 2022 and one of the streets noted was work on 25th Street from Benjamin Avenue to Eisenhower Avenue. The glaring issue here is that not all 25th Street to Eisenhower Avenue has been annexed. It is included in the mass annexation plan.

The vote and public hearing weren’t slated until Sept. 7. How does that work? It clearly shows that the city council and mayor had their minds made up already, and no matter what was said, was going to make a difference or matter. Is this even legal? I have no idea, but it should give everyone in this town pause and think about how they are being represented, if they’re being represented at all!

Does this glaring issue show the lack of integrity? Does this glaring issue show the lack of honesty? Does this glaring issue show the lack of any moral compass? Does this glaring issue show lack of transparency? Everyone can draw their own conclusions about what has been done and how it has been done.

There is at least one area in the mass annexation that has protected covenants attached to the property, that specifically states that these lots are not to be subdivided or sold off. Has this been given any consideration by the city council? It appears that it hasn’t, so I can only draw the conclusion that they want to force those in this area from their property so that they can subdivide it and develop it, instead of just leaving it the way it is. There is no potential for housing growth, unless there is a nefarious plan to do so in the future. This is an important issue, and there are people’s lives that will be greatly affected in negative ways. The city council and mayor tout the fact that now everyone affected by the mass annexation will have representation by the council.

If what I have witnessed lately by the city council and mayor, no way I want them representing me, because I don’t feel they would do so with any honesty, morality, transparency or integrity.

JULIE THOMPSON

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