The ABH has precious little on LPDS today (actually, a quick scan of the online headlines netted nothing whatsoever for me; if I'm wrong somebody point it out to me). Perhaps this is a sign that everybody's talked out on this thing. I'm pretty sure that I am personally. I think we've pretty well hashed it out on both sides here (thanks for those who disagree with us for contributing). There's two weeks until the vote, and it seems like everybody knows where they stand and don't intend to change their minds; that is, except for the Commissioners themselves. Precious little is known about how most of them feel, and if anybody changes their mind on this issue in the next two weeks, it will be those Commissioners in the middle.
We will be watching the meeting in two weeks with much interest; not just because of our interest in the outcome, but because of our interest in the process as well. I am personally hoping that the number of "3 minute" speakers is fairly low, and that instead the Commissioners spend a lot of time hashing it out aloud. This may at first seem anti-democratic, but let me explain why I hope for this. As I alluded to above, Athens has heard from those for and against this; the positions are well-known and for most people they are fixed at this point. Although the number of speakers for and against may be somewhat instructive for the Commissioners on Nov. 1, I would certainly hope that they would not ultimately base their vote on that. What I want to hear at the meeting, therefore, is some discussion that enlightens me on what exactly does drive the votes; I want to know the process this Commission went through to make this decision, whatever it ends up being. I think that may be bigger than the decision itself, because it should provide insight in to how similar decisions would be made in the future. If nothing else positive comes out of this whole thing, it may be that a few more people at least will understand the importance of zoning decisions and of land use planning generally. Hopefully we will emerge from this thing with more people engaged with their local government; and that can't be a bad thing.