Coyote Howlings

The howling about coyotes got so intense that the website NextDoor banned all discussions of the issue. Alas, the issue is flourishing on Facebook. It is close to reaching hysteria level and psychiatrists may need to be called in to defuse the situation with medication.

According to an article in the Wall Street Journal on March 12, there has been one human death attributed to coyotes. It was a 3 year old girl in Glendale, Arizona in 1981.

I run very early in the morning and have routinely seen coyotes on the island and they want nothing to do with me. (Of course, that could be saying something about me…)

It is quite possible the coyotes have killed a cat or two, but I don’t think this has ever been proven. But if so, it is easily prevented. Keep your cat inside. This really isn’t so bad. Most pet owners view their pets as members of their family. Well who lets a family member run around the neighborhood in the middle of the night?

Furthermore, in my experience, most pet owners are animal lovers. Well, shouldn’t we also love coyotes? After all, they are animals, too, and they are not killing us and they don’t even eat our flowers like the deer do in my front yard.

Finally, cats are well known to kill pretty, defenseless birds! I like birds. Should we kill your cat if it kills a bird? Well, there is one way to protect the birds. Keep your cat inside.

The poor coyotes, they don’t have a spokesperson. If they did have one, Rodney King Coyote would be saying, “Can’t we all just get along?”

Marina Musings

The following letter was sent to city council by former council member Brian Duffy.  This letter shows how much the city misses his clear, reasoned thinking.

Dear Mayor and Councilmembers,

I really appreciate your efforts looking into improving the marina. No doubt there is always room for improvement, parking and landscaping being most notable.  I am somewhat heartened to see in the Moultrie News that caution was expressed about catering too strongly to a wide market.  I suggest to you that you have only one market to consider, IOP voters who approved the marina acquisition as an amenity for residents via referendum.  That we have a successful restaurant (who I hope is paying their rent on time) and a successful general store is a good thing, however, it is not why the marina was acquired in the first place. I hope you will keep this in mind as you move through the process.
As a resident who lives 500 yards from the marina and is overly exposed to the “wide market” to which the marina already caters, I am impressed that we have a design engineer who can talk about a “very intimate relationship with the water” and then propose a dry stack!  I guess you can say waterboarding is also a “very intimate relationship with the water”.  If the BEEP, BEEP, BEEP, BEEP of a forklift moving boats around on beautiful island days is not torture, I don’t know what is!  Because I am already overly exposed to the impacts (noise, traffic, and parking) of the marina businesses, I am sure you can tell that I am adamantly opposed to a dry stack at the marina.  I cannot see how it benefits the residents and how it fits in with this part of the  comprehensive plan vision statement:  Measures that will enhance the existing character of the island as a quality place to live, and protect the environment both on and around the island, must be taken to guide development and preserve the quality of life for generations to come.
Thank you for taking the time to read this and I look forward to future resident input sessions.
Best regards,
Brian Duffy

The Perfect is the Enemy of the Good


As I am sure you have noticed, the island is now populated by more litter on a stick.  This sign can be found on every street corner on the island.

And you know what?  I’m ok with it.  Council just spent 6 years coming up with a parking plan.  Six Years!  Why did it take so long?  Because they truly were trying to find the Holy Grail.  That is, a plan that would work and that would not offend anyone.  If you think this is easy, you need to run for office.

And all the complaining you are now hearing about the signs is exactly why no one runs for office.  The last 2 elections have been uncontested.  Despite the huge amount of hard work council put into this, a vocal minority wants to find the one perceived problem and pile on.

Remember, this plan is not carved in stone.  What many many people said about parking was, “Just do something, anything.  If there are problems, changes can be made.”  Sounds pretty reasonable to me.

Well, Sandy “Fiscal” Ferencz started to complain about all the signs.  She was able to lure Jimmy Ward and JimDaddy Carroll onto her cause.  So, at this point the plan is all set and ready to go.  And, oh yes, already paid for.

But wait, what about all these signs?  Well, they have been in the plan all along.  But if you read councilmembers’ comments in the newspaper and on social media they seem to claim they did not know there would be so many signs.  Mayor Cronin told them the plans have been available all along.  Hmmm.  So, let me get this straight.  Council does not even know what is going on.  Is it any wonder that the average citizen is totally in the dark?

See my earlier postings on the non-transparency of city government and how it could easily be fixed.

But, back to the issue at hand.  Someone got the brilliant idea of starting a petition drive to get the signs removed.  By methods unbeknownst to me, JimDaddy nabbed Jeff Evans, and got him to go door to door.  JimDaddy took the easier route and said if you were interested in signing the petition he had a copy in his office!

Having been involved in a huge petition drive I can tell you this:  If the signer has to come to you, you ain’t gonna get many signatures!  To mount a successful petition drive requires a large number of committed people and a lot of time.

All of which tells me this drive is going nowhere and it is probably already over.  Which is good.  If you are going to put effort into a petition drive you need to make sure it is for something really important, like monster mini-hotels taking over the island in the areas zoned for residential living.

A petition drive to get some signs removed is just not worth the effort.  And as Mayor Cronin noted, if it proves the signs are too much or not necessary, council can look at taking them down.

Thank goodness for the adult, clear thinker in the room.