By: Diane Benjamin
I attended the Normal Planning Commission meeting last night. It was over 3 hours because MANY citizens did not want alcohol in the park. The video below is of Town Planner Mercy Davidson. She claims the Town Council brought this forward last year. Actually staff brought it forward and the bobbleheads said go ahead and take it to the Planning Commission.
We know Mercy is wrong because the very first reason for bringing changes to One Normal Plaza, according to their own documents, is this: PDF page 3 https://normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/4031
Of course the Hile Broads are Koos supporters and consummate insiders, so instead of them requesting specific changes, they had the Town do it for them. It is ironic that Julie Hile testified Normandy Village is 98% occupied. She was (I believe) the only supporter of alcohol in the park. Did you notice Doug Farr of Uptown fame is involved?
Link to the audio only of the entire meeting. The Town didn’t feel like video taping it evidently.
Here’s what citizens are expected to believe:
The Town documents stating permitted land uses in One Normal Plaza can not be changed to say alcohol isn’t permitted. Koos buddy and chair of the commission, AJ Zimmerman, made that clear and he was backed up by attorney Brian Day (3:00:50). The excuse given is that the Liquor Commission controls that.
Other parts to listen to: 2:58:30. AJ Zimmerman claims to have talked to many people about ONP. Funny since the area citizens couldn’t get in touch with him since no email addresses or phone numbers are posted for commission members. One public commenter talked about a resident that couldn’t attend, she was told they only take testimony in person. Rules for some and not others?
Mike Matejka attempted to insert language banning or limiting alcohol sales to package only with limited hours, for example a wine and cheese store, but that wasn’t allowed. Listen at 2:59:30 and following. FYI: Matejka lives close to ONP.
Mercy Davidson did promise to take this out as a permitted use: PDF page 29
It will be interesting to see if she does.
A look back to last summer:
Listen to this video from the residents meeting July 2020. Koos could have just listened to the concerns of citizens, but he couldn’t stop himself from talking:
He sure sounds like alcohol won’t be allowed at One Normal Plaza! The Council will vote August 16th.