Why didn’t I stick around listen to the testimony that others gave? I listened to a few but they held this hearing in a room that was way too small and it wasn’t long before it felt downright stifling in there.
I did hang out in the corridor outside of the hearing room for a few minutes and it was there that I ran into Councilperson Mary Kay Sigaty. Mary Kay is the sponsor of this town center redevelopment zoning amendment and that has led to a big falling out between her and Liz Bobo. Last night in his testimony Liz’s hubby, Lloyd Knowles, called on Mary Kay to withdraw the bill.
I think I may have misjudged Mary Kay. Her failed attempt to derail the Plaza Residences condominium project in Town Center made me think she was anti business and anti growth.
Now I’m beginning to change my mind and last night I told her so. She is planning on running for reelection and I told her she’d have my support. I also told her it wasn’t the first time I’ve tasted crow.
After talking to Mary Kay I literally ran into Frank Martin. Frank is one of the “development-wary residents” who are suing the county over its land use policies. They are seeking to have federal supervision of Howard Counties land use decisions and they also want $10 million for their troubles.I know Frank. We went to high school together. I haven’t seen or talked to him in years and I had often wondered if the Frank Martin Turf Valley activist was the same knucklehead Frank Martin that I grew up with. As it turns out it is. This can be a really small county sometimes.
I should note here that I mean “knucklehead” in a friendly sense.
Frank asked me why I hadn’t written anything about his federal lawsuit yet. I told him that while I thought it was a ridiculous lawsuit it does make a good story. He laughed and said he agreed with the part about it being a good story.
You never know what kind of story will come out of these public hearings.