To the editor:

You noted in your (June 29-July 13) Commentary (A real chance to chat with Councilman Shook) that Councilman Howard Shook will require a petition signed by 60 percent of the abutting homeowners before he will allow any future traffic calming projects to proceed in his district.

I just wanted to point out that in an interview published in another newspaper on May 23, 2007, Councilman Shook is quoted as saying “Any new traffic calming initiatives proposed on my watch are not just going to have approval from the neighborhood board, but also from 75 percent of budding (sic) property owners.”

As for the $1 million+ traffic-calming measures recently installed on East Wesley Road, the civic organization that supposedly represented the opinions of the affected homeowners never took ANY votes from the abutting homeowners regarding the proposed street re-design.

And yet, when the city suggested early in 2007, that the project be stopped because of concerns of the bicyclists, the president of the civic organization wrote a letter to the city demanding that the project be completed as originally designed, regardless of homeowner and cyclist opposition. And, thus, the project proceeded.

Something is seriously wrong with the system when unelected individuals who voluntarily serve as civic association board members, but who are not accountable to anyone, are able to direct the city, indeed the federal government, to spend millions of dollars on public works projects when the affected homeowners are not even consulted.

Thank you for airing my concerns,

Betty Rainwater

E. Wesley homeowner