To the editor:
The Village of Mingo Junction has been devastated and reduced to a sorry status.
We have lost the mill, our main employer; we lost our bank; our water filtration plant has a huge mortgage we cannot afford; we had to raid our community complex fund to make our next payment; our overall village expenses exceed our income; we have layoffs and a reduction of services; and turning off the street lights is eminent. It appeared that things could not be worse, but Village Council has exacerbated that. Their latest attack was on our present property maintenance code designed to protect residential valuation for resale and community appearance.
What else can go wrong? Well, the village ordinance which disallows inoperable vehicles from being stored on residential property visible from the street has been changed. After a normal attempt to amend the code failed with no action from the three required readings, council resorted to emulating Chicago-style politics by having an unannounced emergency meeting to amend the ordinance.
Instead of enforcing the present code which protects against unsightly and offensive sights, they changed a long-standing good ordinance to legalize violations the code was trying to prevent. The fire chief was trying to correct illegal storage, but council delayed his actions by manipulating the code. It appears as though the changes were possibly made to legalize some member(s) of council who were in violation of the existing code. So, instead of enforcing the code, they changed it to benefit themselves, which is an obvious conflict of interest for some member(s).
Whereas, in the past, the ruling that certain vehicles could not be stored openly on residential property has not only been changed but they were brash enough to allow up to two vehicles for each house.
This was a huge mistake and it leaves all residential areas vulnerable to unlimited eyesores. It is now legal in Mingo Junction to store a boat and a camper or any two inoperable vehicles on both sides of each house between you and your neighbor in Sun Rise Terrace (Barone's Addition), Altamont, East View, etc. So if residents take advantage of this change, our residential areas could now take on the appearance of a huge parking lot or a trailer court. The members of council who approved of this change have reduced our village to a new low. John Bracone is the only councilman to reject this assault on a homeowners' potential optimum resale value. Our volunteer revitalization committee working to improve the appearance of Mingo Junction to attract new homeowners has been trumped by a council that is moving backward.
Who said it can't get worse? Residents of Mingo Junction deserve better, and the last thing we cannot afford to lose is our pride. It looks like our last hope is fading.