The pendulum has unquestionably swung toward the pecuniary desires of developers in Chapel Hill and certain neighborhoods have targets on their backs. Case in point: Obey Creek.
At the Chapel Hill Town Council’s April work session discussing the immense development across from Southern Village, Mayor Mark Kleinschmidt chided council member Matt Czajkowski. Czajkowski brought up that the council was ignoring the town’s own Obey Creek Compass Committee’s call for additional impact studies analyzing smaller-sized development plans. Visibly upset, Kleinschmidt expressed that such statements fueled the public’s mistrust of the town leaders.
On the contrary, Czajkowski gave hope to southern-area residents that someone is willing to fight for their concerns and against the process’ terrible flaws.
But the mayor is right; a significant segment of the public no longer trusts him or the Chapel Hill Town Council when it comes to Obey Creek. Why? Here’s some Obey Creek history:
All this and more fosters the erosion of public trust in Mayor Kleinschmidt’s and the Chapel Hill Town Council’s willingness to respect the tenets of good governance when it comes to Obey Creek. Taken singularly, any one of these instances can be – and have been – dismissed as mere aberration misinterpreted by the public. But taken in total, it paints a disturbing picture that warrants the distrust of Chapel Hill’s town leaders by southern-area families and the public at large.
Joe Buonfiglio lives in Chapel Hill.