Home Editorial Letter to the Editor – County Council District 1

Letter to the Editor – County Council District 1

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Please allow me to offer my perspective, perhaps somewhat different than others, on our current Morgan County Council member, Tina Cannon.  I have intentionally chosen civic obscurity in recent years, but now believe it my obligation and duty to speak out.  My recent service on the Airport Advisory Board and attendance at County Council meetings have imposed a need to speak with a council member I know I can trust.  Responsible, trustworthy representatives can be difficult to find.  She is the most responsible I know.

We live in Trapper’s Pointe and our home was subjected to a major landslide in the Spring of 2002.  Many of our neighbors are familiar with this event, even though it was so long ago.  My backyard dropped vertically about 12 feet, with a complete shear, ripping sprinkler lines, and buckling the surface below the shear.  Damage occurred to several lots, but mine and my previous neighbor’s were the worst.  He was forced to install large helical piers to prevent home damage, since his house was closer to the shear.  He then moved away soon after.  The landslide also caused a great rift within the community.  Some were intent on protecting the developer; he was their friend.  But others had compelling evidence indicating a certain level of developer liability.  Eventually, the developers made repairs to most of the hillside.  One of the things we learned was that our lot-specific geo-tech report had actually been done on a geographically different lot, one flatter and a significant distance from the hillside we live on, yet with the same lot number!  And of course, we had to pay for this report, yet had no way to know that the geo-tech contractor was using an old plot plan when he performed his analysis.  The analysis showed no springs or slope instability, which was quite the opposite of what we actually had.  Any liability for this, was clearly not with us.  I could go on in discussing our landslide, what caused it and why, but I’m generally left with great feelings of anger each time I recall the events, and the very specific community split it created.  But my story directly relates to Tina Cannon, with her basic nature as a person and qualities as a community representative and county council member.  She was involved in the after-effects of our landslide and worked tirelessly as our HOA board president, partly to ensure that hillside repairs held.  I worked with her as a board member.  She’s very familiar with the events and has worked closely with all state agencies involved.  She uses this knowledge and builds upon it, in scrutinizing new developments.  She’s tough and may be considered hard to get along with, yet she’s a critical thinker and honest.  Yes, she’s also a rule follower and doesn’t like cheaters.  But her words reflect a careful analysis of the topic being discussed, or she does the research to get it, and adherence to those established rules.  I know these things about her first hand.  Aren’t those the qualities we want in our elected representatives?  Well YES, they are!  There should be no doubt in anyone’s mind. Ok, one final thought to consider.  It bears mention that a newly presented and very large development nearby (SMR) is closely tied to our previously mentioned Trapper’s Pointe developers.  He/they are friends to many in Morgan County.  That’s great!  But let me please suggest that a careful, critical analysis of all new Morgan County developments should not be based on friendship alliances, but rather a thorough analysis of the entire project, with due consideration of all details and the impact on our entire community.  In my review of the last three County Council audio tapes, I find that so far, our County Council is doing just that.  I want to thank them, and I also want to thank Tina, for having a significant impact on that analysis.

George Sousa

Boeing 737 Captain

Retired USAF Lt Col

B.S.E.E

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