Connell is listening to constituents
To the Editor,
In response to Jonathan Curenton’s letter to the editor concerning Councilman Connell’s actions pertaining to the proposed rental registration ordinance, I’d like to offer some information to better clarify some facts and eliminate any assumptions regarding Councilman Connell’s character and intent for his more recent decision to now vote against the rental registration ordinance.
During the initial April 2019 Council meeting, the ordinance was unanimously supported 7 – 0, then at the following May 2019 meeting it was voted down 3 – 4. This means that after additional consideration, four of the seven Councilmen requested further examination of the rental registration ordinance before passing it through. This does not imply that they are against the ordinance, rather, it demonstrates their willingness to approach this matter with discernment in order to make the best possible decision for the landlords, tenants, and the City of Weirton.
With respect to your comment pertaining to Councilman Connell’s integrity, I must mention that one of the most important qualities a Councilman or any leader must possess is the willingness to listen carefully to the concerns of the citizens. Councilman Connell did just that! At the May 2019 Council meeting, landlords and other Councilmen voiced their concerns offering more perspective to the matter. Furthermore, it was brought to their attention that the City of Pittsburgh passed similar legislation that left them vulnerable and at risk for legal issues. It was also questioned as to whether it was constitutional. To protect the citizens and the City, Councilman Connell and three other Councilmen requested further investigation to ensure, as you stated, they were “informed and prepared to make educated decisions”. The fact that you assume that their discernment is equal to a “lack of readiness or unpreparedness”, as you stated, makes me question your ability to lead, represent, and make decisions that affect the great citizens of Weirton. In your letter, you claim you are “committed to understanding the issues”. Perhaps if you had attended any of the City Council meetings where this issue was discussed, you would possess “knowledge of key issues”, which Councilman Connell has demonstrated by his willingness to take a second, more well-informed look at the matter. Your lack of knowledge of the issues and absenteeism at Council meetings demonstrates your apathy towards taking the job of Councilman of Ward 1 seriously. Tim Connell, as Ward 1 Councilman, has demonstrated integrity, wisdom, and discretion as he passionately and wholeheartedly cares for the citizens of Weirton and the City’s future.