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December 27, 2014

Letter: Letter to Editor misses real problem

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Posted: Thursday, October 17, 2013 12:00 am | Updated: 2:53 pm, Wed Jun 11, 2014.

"Hey, have you heard about Bubba catching a 5-pound bass on a finesse worm down in the big pot hole on MacDonald Lake Road?" 

"Rumor is there’s a small SUV down there somewhere." 

"Yep, I live third door up on the right from the big crater." 

"Dad, you know that the roads here in this foreign village are a lot better than the ones at MacDonald Farm." 

These are just some of the conversations we’ve heard around the MacDonald Farm neighborhood. 

In Guy Martin’s eloquent letter to the editor ("Restrictive ordinances in Springville have inhibited development," Oct. 3) he states, "Solving the problem at MacDonald Farm, therefore, must start with understanding the problem." He is correct. 

Rather than deflect our attention to past or potential future problems, however, let’s focus and define "the problem." "The problem" is this: MacDonald Farm, LLC has failed to complete its commitment to the City of Springville to finish the roads in Phases 2, 3 and 4. 

The Planning and Zoning Commission approved MacDonald Farm, LLC’s preliminary and final plats which specify how the roads are to be completed. Springville’s regulations are referenced in the above plats and further define the road requirements. In the opinion of the residents, these plats are the contract between the City and MacDonald Farm, LLC. 

Furthermore, a surety was required of MacDonald Farm, LLC, by the City, to ensure that the roads and other improvements were satisfactorily completed. MacDonald Farm, LLC has withdrawn the surety  in some phases this was an "irrevocable letter of credit" and in other phases it was to be a "performance bond."

So, MacDonald Farm, LLC has not completed the roads, nor have they kept the surety in force.  That’s "the problem." 

The City and the Homeowners Association have requested numerous times for the work to be completed. MacDonald Farm, LLC has responded by trying to use the completion of the roads as leverage to get variances to the subdivision regulations for future phases. 

In other words, they are holding over 100 families hostage to uncompleted commitments which affect safety, general welfare and property values. The City has correctly refused to make such a deal. 

In the meantime, the roads continue to deteriorate and become more costly to complete, the citizens continue to dodge pot holes and have their cars realigned, the school has been contacted regarding safety issues on the bus route, and we give directions to our homes by the distance we live from a specific pot hole. "Our sleeves have been rolled up" for years as we have lived with and tried to have "the problem" corrected.

As for the City of Springville, all one has to do is open their eyes and they will see the many improvements our City is making. Check the downtown area, the park, the Senior Citizen Center, the work on the fire and the police stations, the work on the football and soccer fields, the recycling center, and the balanced budget. 

In Sept. 2008, immediately before the Mayor and the majority of current Council Persons took office, KPS completed a Comprehensive Plan for the City based in part on a community survey. The results of the survey showed that the citizens preferred a "moderate growth model" for Springville and that’s exactly what the City has delivered. But we, too, digress from "the problem."

We’re sure if MacDonald Farm, LLC will honor their commitment to completing the roads in Phases 2, 3 and 4, and then come to the table with reasonable proposals for future work, the City would respond in like manner. It is in the best interest for all parties: the City, the homeowners and MacDonald Farm, LLC.

Finally, we believe "the problem" has ethical and moral elements. The quote Mr. Martin credits Benjamin Disraeli with is a good one. Here’s one from a higher source that we all should heed: Matthew 5:25-26. Please check it out -- we trust that you will find the right solution to "the problem!" 

Well, the fish are biting down at the big pot hole -- you know the one, it covers half the road.

 

  Concerned citizens of MacDonald Farm

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