Shelby town officials should hold off on Overlay District

Posted 12 September 2016 at 12:12 pm


I attended the Town of Shelby public hearing on Sept. 7, regarding Local Law No 2 of 2016, which creates the Wildlife Refuge Protection Overlay District.

I realize this was meant for the Town Board to hear the comments of  the surrounding community on this proposed law in both the positive and negative light. However, I get the feeling the Town Board has already made their decision on Local Law No 2 and  they were just going through the motions and formalities of a hearing.

First, they would not provide a microphone so the concerned audience could hear these comments and  concerns. The Supervisor, Merle Draper, was obnoxiously rude to the woman sitting next to me when she requested one. This is both appalling and shameful behavior. Secondly, he and the town’s attorney had the audacity to have an intimate conversation while Mr. Mahar was speaking.

He has spent 10 long years on this project and deserves the respect to be heard. This Board does not respect him or any of the members of this community, the citizens for whom they work for.

They should not forget, that they do in fact work for the citizens and taxpayers of the Town of Shelby – period.

This Board has a negative stance towards progress and business, both big and small. They do tend to pull the rug out from under the feet of hard working folks who are trying to make a living and a better way of life to themselves and the surrounding community through the ripple effect and to build commerce.

Instead, they hold this community hostage. This law, as I see it, is to stop the quarry by way of zoning in the name of wildlife preservation. In the meanwhile, other property owners are not able to use or develop the land they worked so hard for and yet pay some of the highest taxes in WNY.

I met a man with a small home with some land that he would rent to farm. He was told by the town, he could not. This would help him pay his $6,000 annual taxes. Taxes this town uses to urinate away by hiring attorneys and other consultants outside the community to defend their zoning decisions and what have you.

This “selective” zoning does nothing but put a burden and create hardship on this community. Since the town discourages business, it allows this area to remain in an oppressive state, with declining property values and with this, it allows poverty and crime to move in. Drug traffic and theft seem to be the only commerce for this sleepy little town.

I strongly feel that any board member who resides in the “overlay” must not be able to vote on Local Law No 2 as it would be prejudiced and biased. Local Law No 2 should be put into the hands of the community, by vote to determine which way this thing should go.

Lastly, in my view, I have lost all trust and confidence in the Board and question their integrity, competence and motives. They cannot be trusted with the health and well-being of this community and is a poor representation of the people and the republican base of this county.

It is sad to know that a majority of the public have no idea what is going on around them while the “good ole’ boys” run amuck and carry on with business as usual.

Kim Weatherbee