©2011 Galesburg Broadcasting Co.
|Quiet Zones Approved but Not Without Controversy
|The vote to close some rail crossings in Galesburg almost derailed the city's plans to close all of them and get a federal quiet zone designation.
"All of a sudden you have a break and now you come back and are going to change the vote, I'm very disappointed, said resident John Shotts. "This town is never going to make it with decisions like this. That's all I have to say."
Shotts' comments came after aldermen initially voted five-to-two Monday night to close the crossings near South Chambers and North Pearl Streets, but re-voted after a recess, turning alderman Wayne Dennis from a "no" vote to a "yes". Dennis said he wasn't in favor of closing Chambers, but didn't want to ruin the whole project, after it was learned that a three-fourths majority would be needed to pass all the closures. Had one measure failed, incentives for the closure could have been reduced or could have gone away.
Third Ward Alderman Russell Fleming, who again turned out to be the lone "no" vote on a city ordinance, told Dennis he wouldn't have been.
"Voting against closing against closing Chambers does not vote against the quiet zone," Fleming said. "It does not kill the quiet zone, the quiet zone can go forward."
All the proposed closures ended up being approved on the same six-to-one margin, as did a stipulated agreement that would lead to funding of needed crossing circuitry upgrades, and a formal agreement with Burlington Northern Santa Fe for the closures.
Several business owners pressed aldermen to leave the Chambers and Pearl Street crossings open, claiming the city never did ask them about it, despite the fact there have been numerous public hearings on the matter.
(City Engineer Wayne Carl points to a map of the proposed quiet zone-related rail crossing closures Monday night, while 2nd Ward Alderman Wayne Dennis watches. WGIL News Story and Photo by Will Stevenson.)
|04 17 12 by Newsroom
Click here for the WGIL News Archive
Click here for national news
The following provision applies to all visitors (which shall include persons and representatives of legal entities, whether such representatives are persons or digital engines of a kind that crawls, indexes, scrapes, copies, stores or transmits digital content). By accessing this Web site or digital service, you specifically acknowledge and agree that: (i) Associated Press text, photo, graphic, audio and/or video material shall not be published, broadcast, rewritten for broadcast or publication or redistributed directly or indirectly in any medium; (ii) No Associated Press materials nor any portion thereof may be stored in a computer except for personal and non-commercial use; (iii) The Associated Press will not be held liable for any delays, inaccuracies, errors or omissions therefrom or in the transmission or delivery of all or any part thereof or for any damages arising from any of the foregoing; (iv) The Associated Press is an intended third party beneficiary of these terms and conditions and it may exercise all rights and remedies available to it; and (v) The Associated Press reserves the right to audit possible unauthorized commercial use of AP materials or any portion thereof at any time.