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How many times have we stated that perception is reality? That is the problem we see with the council’s decision Tuesday night on the skate park.
If there had been some kind of independent, impartial hearing officer or body that had rendered the exact same decision as the one the council did, we believe this issue would be over.
But those who question the project – and the process – simply do not feel they got a fair hearing, that, it was not right to have the judgment made by those who made the judgment.
We wish Council Chair Jim Hall’s comment that he hoped “everyone will come together and accept the (skate park) project” was possible.
But we don’t see it.
In fact, we think that the hearing Tuesday night in which the council upheld the skate park plan only made matters worse.
We wish the council had found a way to recuse itself and have a neutral party hear the appeal. In life, appearance is everything and it just looked bad for the council to pass judgment on itself.
As we have said, we have no problem with a skate park in front of the library. We simply feel the county did not follow its own process or held itself to the same standards as it holds others.
And it ignored its own appointed boards – which voted against the plan.
So this goes on.
We were so wishing that some healing would occur at the hearing but fear that things only got worse. It is sad that the appellants feel that the council did not listen, that the fix was in from the beginning. That will sting.
Again, perception is everything.
There are some serious issues here, with the process, with fairness and with accountability.
We think that there were some more wounds created – quite needlessly – that will not heal any time soon.
And that is the most tragic outcome of all.
But is it is done and construction is set to begin on the Los Alamos Skate Park in front of Mesa Public Library.
We hope the proponents will be proven right, that there is green, that it does not disrupt the library and the senior center and that we will all come to admire the facility.
We truly hope.