As the battle over redistributing poverty continues, citizens remain outraged, Mayor Battle says little.
HUNTSVILLE --Tuesday night's Town Hall Meeting at Grissom High School got off to a late start, finally commencing at 1830. The hot topic for the evening was the redistribution of poverty throughout the city, which some like the South Huntsville Civic Association (SHCA) claim unfairly targets South Huntsville.
Councilwoman Sandra Moon (City Council District 3) made remarks early in the presentation and made the following clear: Brittany Point is NOT FOR SALE nor do they accept Section 8 vouchers. Other properties she listed with this status were Meadows, Malibu and Lord Cheny Thompson.
Mayor Tommy Battle reported that there had been 14 move-ins to Stone Manor, 7 of which he claimed were able to sustain themselves.
Representative Mike Ball (10th District) Commended Senator Orr (District 3) for his help with the Ethics Reform Bill HB262. Part of this bill would require all State funds to be put in an on-line searchable database that is easy to use and browser neutral. Representative Ball then proceeded to point out that the Huntsville Housing Authority was created by the Alabama Legislature and had three flaws:
1. Eminent Domain (Title 18) The Housing Authority has the power to confiscate private property as it sees fit.
2. There is no required notification or Due Process for the Housing Authority
3. There are no checks and balances on the Housing Authority at any level: local (mayoral, city council), State (governor, state legislature) or Federal (President, Congress).
Representative Ball then reported that he has discussed the issue with many of the State Legislators and there is a growing number who want to reform the Housing Authority and promised to make Housing Authority Reform his number one priority.
Shane Davis, Director of Engineering gave updates on Parkway construction sating that all Parkway construction should be completed by 2014.
Despite all of the positive news and updates, time was running short in the meeting when it finally came time to answer questions emailed into the South Huntsville Civic Association from concerned citizens. Despite the meeting opening with a plea for mutual respect of all attendees, Mayor Battle was heckled during the first question.
"I'm a lawyer, and I'm telling you that he [Battle] won't answer the question." the heckler shouted.
Mayor Battle restricted his comments on the Huntsville Housing Authority during the Q&A and maintained the position that without feedback loops such as SHCA and watchdog groups such as Huntsville Community Rights (http://huntsvillecommunityrights.com
) there would be no way to hold elected officials responsible, despite mentioning the statistic of 37 some such civic associations.
After the meeting, when asked why there wasn't more discussion on the redistribution of poverty, one SHCA volunteer said "They [the mayor's office] took over the meeting."
Originally published at http://alabama.newsplatoon.com/2009/05/19/many-concerned-few-questions-answered/