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Letters to the Editor

An open letter to Mayor Dick Kopczick

Dear Mr. Mayor/Dick,

It saddens my heart to write this letter. You and I have known each other most of our lives. We grew up in the same neighborhood. I voted for you in the last three elections.
For the following reasons, I will not be making that mistake a fourth time. I plan on supporting Mr. Muffler.

Mr. Mayor/Dick, as you know, I live in the 4th ward, which also encompasses  most of Flood Zone A. We have spoken  on several occasions regarding the issue of my home and the roughly 200  homes and businesses in this area being wrongfully placed in this flood zone. I have attended several council meetings in regards to this issue to no avail. We both agree this is case of misfortune, a true travesty.

Unlike the other flood zones in the city of Morris, Flood Zone A was not a flood zone when the homes were built. Therefore, a base level was never determined. It was placed in a flood zone after an accidental mishap in the late ’70s ,when the strip  mine water flow was interrupted due to the building of the overpass crossing over the railroad tracks on Illinois 47.

As a result, we flooded. This was not an act of God, it was an engineering error that has since been corrected.

I understand we are living in hard times, the budget is tight, people are struggling financially.  I understand that the Flood Zone A issue does not affect the entire city. I understand to fund a study to determine our base level could cost a few hundred thousand dollars.  I also understand that we possibly will remain in the flood zone after the study is completed.

That being said, what I don’t understand is why this issue has been on the back burner for the past 12 years you have been in office? I have sat back and watched, you the mayor and the city of Morris, build a city building, a swimming pool, purchase a band shell, etc., etc., all the while refusing to put in your budget money to fund the study to determine our base level.

We the citizens of Flood Zone A are hurting. I personally have spent almost $14,000 and counting on unnecessary flood insurance.  Multiply that number by the rest of Flood Zone A residents and business owners.

Do the math; we are talking about millions of taxpayer dollars being wasted on unnecessary flood insurance. I have watched neighbor after neighbor struggle to sell their homes and settle for far lower selling prices than their homes are worth because they are in a flood zone.

In closing, I would like to add it is We the People who hire and fire. It is We the People who pay your salary. It is We the People whom you pledged to serve when you took the oath of office!

I pray that on April 9th, the citizens of Morris vote against four more years of wasteful spending and neglecting the needs of the taxpayers.



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