Last night sparks were flying and so were some accusations from the Chairman of the Planning and Zoning Commission, Mr. Gene Ruocco about the proposed project at 155 Short Beach Road. When I went to testify against the proposed project I specifically sited the fact that the residents of the area have demanded a traffic light at the corner of Mansfield Grove Road and Short Beach Road for over twenty years. I told the Commission that we were promised by former State Representative Mike Lawlor, Mayor April Capone and Councilman Joe Santino that it would be done. To date nothing but the clearing of brush has been done. I further pointed out that I disagreed with the developer's hired traffic consultant that there wasn't adverse traffic problems in the area and that an additional 51 units will cause an increase of traffic in the area because not only are the residents going to have vehicles but I would suspect that family members and others would come to visit as well.
See the traffic study conducted by Brendan Toller
The response to my comments from Mr. Ruocco? Paraphrasing,
Mr. Ruocco: "Mr. McCann I know you served on the Town Council in 2004 were you aware of the 11 unit subdivision that was approved."
Dan McCann: "Yes I was aware of the subdivision and I did not support it."
Mr. Ruocco: "Well you voted for it"
Dan McCann: "That is incorrect Mr. Ruocco the Town Council does not vote on Zoning issues."
Mr. Ruocco: "Well your administration did"
Dan McCann:" The P&Z is under the control of the Mayors Office not the Town Council"
So what was Mr. Ruocco trying to say? I know what he was trying to do. Pass the blame on to the Mautro Administration for what is currently going on. Which is utter nonsense. Mr. Ruocco was trying to make politics once again instead of doing his job as Chairman and run the meeting. What Mr. Ruocco fails to understand is no one in the Riverside neighborhood cares about Democrat or Republican, they care about the quality of life in Riverside and jamming a 51 unit condo unit for 55 and over on Three Stone Pillars is not the place to do it.
Mr. Ruocco continued his political bantering immediately after me by pointing his venom at former Mayor Maturo, who all of a sudden after 3 years is back on the scene defending his Administration and running for Mayor. Ruocco and Maturo are two peas of the same pod, just on different ends of the political table, one trying to maintain his power the other trying to get the power back. While we appreciate former Mayor Maturo's support now there are very trying questions on why that parcel was permitted to have 11 units in the first place, especially after the battle with the proposed Wheaton Road project on the other side of Short Beach Road. Message to candidates, understand where we stand on this issue, we don't want it and we also will do our homework to find out the truth about past dealings!
The bottom line is while I understand politics and play in the game, I wasn't there last night to play a political game. I was there with my fellow Riverside residents trying to protect a piece of land from being overly developed and causing more strain on the resources of the Town and it's citizens. We don't need politicians bantering back and forth while the residents sit in the crossfire. We need representation and protection. The residents of Riverside love their neighborhood that's why there was over 150 people there last night.
Brendan Toller, Kim Lucky and Nicky Whtehead did their homework very well and we are proud that they represented our interests last night.
The message to this Administration is very clear. If you support this project we will become activists and political and vote you out of office. Former Mayor Maturo was correct about one thing last night. When we were made aware that a petition was circulated the project stopped dead in it's tracks. This Administration better pay close attention. WE DON'T WANT THIS PROJECT and we expect action.