I watched the Sioux Falls city council meeting in which several residents from the Sanford Rezoning neighborhood spoke out against the rezoning, mainly because they were not sure if all the residents were properly notified. Councilor Staggers suggested that Sanford should notify every single resident and have written proof they understand and approve of the rezoning before passage. Sounded pretty reasonable to me. But in typical beauracratic fashion, city planner Mike Cooper thought it would be easy to move forward as planned then if the residents wanted to change back he would help them out for FREE. Once again inefficiency won. What surprised me the most was that it passed at all. Two other councilors seemed to agree with Staggers during the discussion (Brown and Anderson) and Munson reminded them that it would take 5 votes to pass. Litz could not vote because he lived within 300 feet of the zoning area and Knudson was absent. Well guess what, Staggers was the only one to vote it down, so it passed. What makes this more disappointing was the citizens WERE NOT represented that night, the hospital was and if voted down it would have been a mere inconvenience for Sanford and would not have affected operations whatsoever. But the council decided to inconveniece 27 residents instead of the hospital, essentially turning their backs on the people who elect them. It was a pretty pathetic scene.

Here’s some commentary from the meeting;

13 Thoughts on “Citizens speak out about hospital expansion, but is City Hall listening

  1. Angry Guy on December 31, 2008 at 7:44 am said:

    Fill me in again. Are these people losing their homes, or is it just a rezoning issue?

    I’m torn on this one. While I don’t necessarily like the sprawl mentality that Sanford is in, it isn’t doing anything negative for these residents other than displacing them. It isn’t like these people have to put their house on the market and pay a realtor to show it and then pay thousands of dollars to that jackass when and if it sells. They have to go through two steps. Pay for an appraisal, collect a check from Sanford. These home owners have plenty of time to find another home and move. Sanford isn’t evicting them with 30 days notice.
    I’m right on the edge of Sanford’s “blank check” boundary. If that changed and they rezoned my block, I would welcome it. Especially in today’s economy.

  2. I agree with you, as you know I live right next to Avera and my property was already rezoned to light-commercial before I bought the house, which means I can’t make any additions unless the City Council approves of it (good luck with that – Huh?). If Avera offered me the same deal Sanford offers people, I would sell in a heartbeat. I think it is very fair. That isn’t what this is about though. Sanford was asking over 25 properties to rezone. They can object to it, and I think 4 of them did. But the problem is the notification process. Twenty-seven property owners did not respond, so no one knows if they know what is going on. Staggers asked if a certified letter was sent, and the response was ‘NO’. Staggers suggested that Sanford go to each property owner and get in writing that they understand what the rezoning means, then go ahead with the rezoning. Seems reasonable to me. I also forgot to mention that Sanford had to start the process over once already because they were not following rules when it came to posting re-zoning signage, that’s another thing that makes me leary about the deal.

    Though I think the hospitals do have to expand in there current locations, I do think many of their specialty clinics, etc. can be built in other locations. We live in a technologically advanced society, I’m sure they can figure it out.

  3. Ghost of Dude on December 31, 2008 at 8:27 am said:

    Plus, they have a helicopter to ferry patients around between the clinics.

    I used to live in the flight path between the hospital and the heart hospital. I was having ‘Nam flashbacks – and I wasn’t even born until that war had been over for 10 years.

  4. Not only do I live in the flight path of Avera but I live in the landing path of the SF Airport and by two major RR lines.

    It helps with the property taxes though.

    And some people wonder why I sleep in the basement.

  5. Angry Guy on December 31, 2008 at 8:47 am said:

    Is it because that is where the tiki bar is?

  6. Angry Guy on December 31, 2008 at 8:48 am said:

    My whole house shakes and the windows rattle when their bird comes in hot for a landing. I’m thinking of mounting a turret on the roof.

    I can’t complain though. My street gets plowed first and there are always police around to keep out the riff raff.

  7. Riff raff is right!

  8. Ghost of Dude on December 31, 2008 at 9:05 am said:

    I wonder why my street always gets plowed early then. We don’t live near anything important. They usually come by just as I’m settling in for the night.

  9. Angry Guy on December 31, 2008 at 9:44 am said:

    Maybe one of the plow drivers has parents on your street. When we lived on the west side, our neighbors had a daughter who drove a dumpdruck plow for the highway dept, and our street was ALWAYS plowed and sanded first.

  10. That, and several of the plows are privately contracted. Since they are (trying) to make a profit, they probably find ways to save time and money and don’t follow specific routes at specific times, which probably explains why ticketing and towing is so messed up.

    and BTW, is a ‘dumpdruck’ kinda like a ‘dumb drunk’? Because I qualify.

  11. Angry Guy on December 31, 2008 at 10:20 am said:

    I’m more of an Emergency Snow Route, since I tend to get plowed on a reqular basis.

  12. Ghost of Dude on December 31, 2008 at 11:08 am said:

    That’s what she said.

  13. Wish I lived on a Emergency Snow route . . .

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