Thursday, September 20, 2012

What The Hell?

I have never professed to have an understanding of our government. Oh, I understand how it's supposed to work thanks to my wonderful American Government teachers in high school, but when it comes to the actual WORKINGS of our government, I just don't get it. Red tape seems to abound and when I read about  stories of folks trying to get, oh I don't know, say a building permit for a small shed on property they owned for the last 30 years and it get's denied because a ground hog that hasn't been seen in years farted on the property 100 years ago in a thunderstorm during a solar eclipse and therefore they can't get the permit, I tend to question how our government is really working. Then I saw an article and I am just completely flabbergasted.
Ori Feibush is a businessman in Philly. He owns a coffee shop that is next to a city owned lot that was vacant and COVERED in tons of trash. It looked bad. People used it as an illegal dump. It was a drag for his customers to look at as they enjoyed their coffee. Mr. Feibush called the Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority more than 20 times, went to the PRA offices at least four times, and even wrote several letters asking that the lot be cleaned up. I myself can only imagine the huge amount of vermin that probably lived in there. Mr. Feibush even offered to put his own money behind the cleanup, thus relieving the city of a burden on it's budget, but was a citation flatly told no. What's a business owner to do?

Clean it up anyway.

This businessman spent $20,000 of his own money to remove 40 TONS OF TRASH from the vacant lot. 40 tons!!! That is a lot of trash. Not only did he clean up the lot, but he leveled it, planted trees, put in fencing and benches, and even paved the sidewalk exactly like the city so it would be uniform. So what does he get for his generosity? Sued. Yup, if the man doesn't put the lot back to it's former nasty glory he's gonna be sued by Philly. 
Um, gee thanks for that. And to make it even more stupid...
"The situation is not without irony. In 2011 Mr Feibush received a citation for litter on the same lot that the city is now pointing out is not his property."

Yeah, they are giving him a ticket for litter, yet asking him to restore 40 tons of the shit to the lot. Makes a lot of sense, right? People who revitalize our cities and neighborhoods should be celebrate, not cited. Yes, he did go about it after being told no by the city,but I say Mr. Feibush is a hero and it is STUPID for the City of Philadelphia to spend even more tax money on a frivolous lawsuit. And our government wonders why we are unhappy? Go figure. 

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