Friday, May 17, 2013

Ear to the Ground

In spite of efforts by business owners and Alderman John Friedman (Third Ward) to get Mayor William Hallenbeck to rescind the mass gathering permit allowing Joe Fierro to close the 300 block of Warren Street to traffic on Saturday, by late afternoon today "No Parking" signs lined the street from Third to Fourth.

According to Gossips sources, the mayor finally agreed, after appeals from Friedman and Common Council president Don Moore, to ask that cars and motorcycles be parked only on the north side of the street, leaving a traffic lane on the south side of the street open for cars traveling east, but Fierro was having none of it. Having gotten his mass gathering permit, he refused to comply with the mayor's request.

There is ample evidence that Fierro's claim, reported in today's Register-Star, that he "had spoken to everyone he could think of and gotten a favorable response" is at best an exaggeration and at worst a complete fabrication. Unfortunately, John Mason reported that the First Presbyterian Church was going to sell food during the event. Gossips has it on good authority that this is not the case. Apparently, Fierro told Mason that "the church" was going to sell food, and Mason assumed "the church" was the First Presbyterian Church, since it's the only church in the 300 block of Warren Street. It seems more likely, to Gossips at least, that "the church" Fierro referred to is the Rock Solid Church, located on Union Street and City Hall Place.

The real question, of course, is whether or not the mass gathering permit should have been issued in the first place. This is what the city code has to say about the approval process for mass gathering permits:

Subparagraph (3) is the important one here: "Does the proposed special event unreasonably interfere with the rights of the neighbors?" The answer to that would seem to be a resounding yes.

Addendum: So far as I could see, checking out the event a couple of times throughout the afternoon, no church was selling food. 


  1. Does the church have a permit to sell food to the public at this event?

  2. Reading subparagraph (3) it becomes quite obvious that Mayor Hallenbeck doesn't know anything about the "Approval Process". Or maybe Joe Fiero has a Mayor in his back pocket. American Glory never has been a team player ever since it showed up on Warren Street. Or has it been renamed Fiero Street? Bet the church will be selling BBQ food probably!

    1. Now now, there's no reason to be unfair to churches unless you know something the rest of us don't (metaphysical assertions notwithstanding!).

  3. John Friedman had it right when he said, in the case of this particular Clown Town antic, that City Hall was "...leading from the rear." Joe Fiero needs an intervention, perhaps an exorcism, to break this un-neighborly and community-withering pattern at which he excels. As it is, I tell out-of-towners to avoid his place and I tell them why. I'm making a point of telling him what I think tomorrow to his face. Others should do the same. He's a substantial civic liability.

  4. It surly does seem like a few citizens in this town get special treatment while the vast majority sit back and wonder ...