Cleanup citation shows bureaucratic silliness

To the editor:

Just read John Schaffner’s excellent report “Reward for park cleanup: Court date” (Buckhead Reporter, May 1-14). Good story, well written. I am particularly pleased to see the media call attention to the stupidities of bureaucratic vanity over turf, over silly rules and regulations that defy common sense.

Joshua Pechter and his community colleagues have performed a civic service in cleaning up Mayson Ravine Park. They should be commended. It defies common sense for the Atlanta Department of Public Works to issue a citation over mulch.

As for the other red tape to be cut before Pechter and his neighbors could even begin a cleanup, I’m left flabbergasted over the silliness of Atlanta’s commissioner of parks and the Brookhaven Club Neighborhood Association, not to mention Park Pride (whatever that is) and Councilman Howard Shook.

I can’t believe that this case will not be dismissed by the Atlanta Municipal Court without a second thought — although a judge might find the situation amusing.

It is not amusing, however, whenever local authorities refuse to apply common sense to issues such as the Mayson Park cleanup as they arise in any community.

For the record, Schaffner’s piece caught my eye with the mention of Mayson Park, named after a pioneer settler in the Atlanta area from 1826. My wife is a descendant of that family.

Edmund A. Bator

Watershed Management’s mistakes go both ways

To the editor:

First, I would like to thank you for your coverage of Fire Station 27. As a task force member, it has been very helpful to us.

I find it interesting that no one has picked up the other side of the Department of Watershed Management story. They are so incompetent that they cannot correct an underbilling issue either.

They swapped the account numbers for my house and irrigation meter on the January bills. I had cut off the valve on my side of the landscape meter in November and drained the line for the winter. There could be no usage. That is reflected in some of the billing.

I called immediately to tell them of the error and that the meter numbers simply needed to be swapped back. This process should take two minutes. They have sent people to look at my meters each month since January, after I called again about the problem.

They have been called by the City Council offices of both Clair Muller and Mary Norwood. Ben Jacob, our representative to Neighborhood Planning Unit A from Watershed Management, is trying to get something done about this.

The last bill, they read what they thought was the landscape meter and estimated what they thought was the house meter and billed me for both. I have been paying no sewer tax for months during a time they say they desperately need the money.

I would guess there are a number of people being undercharged. We just have far less incentive to get the problem fixed.

Al Goodgame