Paved parking? How about paved alleys

The Brookfield Plan Commission proposes to have all unpaved parking areas in Brookfield paved with asphalt, concrete or other dust-free materials, because it would help clean up neighborhoods (“Brookfielders may be required to pave parking areas, News, June 22).

They should take off their blinders and look at the many alleys here in Brookfield first. Can they show me one parking area where the cars or trucks drive 30 or 35 miles an hour, raising clouds of dirt and dust? How often do people that have to use the alleys have to clean their cars because of these Bedrock-type alleys.

As the ordinance now stands, it only requires pavement for people who own three or more vehicles. In the last 10 years, how many tickets were written for violations of that ordinance?

Ted Schwartz

Why should we pay for past mistakes?

I have lived in Brookfield how for six years. When I first looked into moving here, I did not see the sign that said, “Please move to Brookfield and help pay for what has not been done since 1972.”

Home values have risen because of the lack of any more raw land available, not because of anything that is offered here. I believe a town should offer a street and a sidewalk as a reason to move to that town?”not come in and pay for the mistakes that have been made (that are nobody’s fault, ha ha). Accountability comes to mind. If I am that far off base, I wish someone would help me understand.

William Brinkman

Village needs to do its part with paving

Regarding the article, “Brookfielders may be required to pave parking areas” (News,
June 22), I feel I must write this letter.

How can you ask/demand the residents pave their personal off-street parking spaces with “dust-free” materials and keep the unpaved gravel alleys in such disrepair, as they have been for the 41 years I have lived here?

This is not a dust free town! It is a town that is very unhealthy for asthmatics and anyone that has any kind of respiratory ailment. I have always hoped that the alleys would be paved. Of course, trying to get enough neighbors to agree to pay their share for this improvement has been impossible. Now that they may have to pay for paving their spaces, they will consider having their alley paved? Otherwise, rather than paying extra, they may just decide to park on the street.

Why don’t you look into the possibility of getting the alleys paved? If we, the residents, are required to pave our spaces with dust-free materials, why isn’t the village required to provide dust-free materials in our alleys?

Brookfield or Bedrock (Fred Flintstone’s town)?”no difference.

Jayne Daly

Required paving just a fee generator

I just finished reading the article “Brookfielders may be required to pave parking areas (News, June 22), and now that I’m done laughing, I just had to put in my two cents’ worth.

So our leaders are concerned about dust. How thoughtful of them. Perhaps their concern over the issue of dust generated by people parking their cars off the street would be better addressed by having alleys that don’t generate dust, as they are not paved.

The dust stirred up by vehicle traffic in alleys is much bigger than the dust stirred up by parking a car. Think about how much dust is stirred up each week when the garbage truck drives down the alley, then the yard waste truck, then the recycling truck.

Parking vehicles off the street allows for better traffic flow. Parking vehicles off the street prevents them from being struck by other vehicles. Parking vehicles off the street is a benefit to the village in that emergency vehicles have better access when responding to emergencies. Village vehicles have better access when performing their duties, such as cleaning up branches after storms.

I find it hard to believe that their concern is for the dust on unpaved parking spaces. Seems more like a way to generate fees, because paving would require a permit issued by the village. How much money would be generated by the fees? What would the money be used for?

If the money generated would be used for paving those dust-producing alleys maybe this idea would sit better with residents. As for now, it just sounds like another way to put the village’s hands in the residents’ pockets.

Jackie Lietz

Better way needed to ID those arrested

Last Wednesday, June 22,2005, an article appeared in the police report section of the Landmark about a minor Riverside girl who was arrested for underage drinking. The article gave the girl’s first and last name, but had no other identification. One of our daughters (who is not a minor) has a very similar name, and we were all quite upset after reading the article, fearing that some people might think that it was she who had been arrested.

Our daughter is an honor student, resident assistant and member of the homecoming court at a Big Ten university, and she has no criminal record. She was not the one arrested. Despite that, we’re naturally very concerned that this sort of confusion could have negative repercussions for her either now or in the future, because a casual reader has no way of knowing that she wasn’t the girl in the report. Our concerns were amplified when we received an anonymous note in the mail along with a copy of the Landmark article, showing that at least someone believes that our daughter was the one arrested.

In a phone conversation with the editor of the Landmark, he informed us that despite the confusion, he was hesitant to rectify the situation by further identifying the minor girl, because doing so might cause further embarrassment to her or her family. Although we understand his position, we suggest that the Landmark reconsider its policy and in the future either refrain from printing names of minors at all, or else completely identify them in order to avoid any ambiguity.

We fully understand the embarrassment and remorse this girl and her family must feel, and of course many minors make at least one public mistake such as this as a part of growing up. At the same time, however, the confusion due to the ambiguous report in the Landmark has caused our completely innocent daughter a great deal of undeserved embarrassment and anguish.

Jill and Karl Vacek

 Ed. note: The police report referenced above did include the girl’s age. 

Break the silence on elder abuse

May was Older Americans Month, a time to celebrate our elders. It was time to thank them for all of the contributions they have made, the foundations they have laid for all of us.

But, in our rush to acknowledge our debt to the generations that came before us, let us not forget those who hide in the shadows, away from the spotlight?”the victims of elder abuse.

These members of the greatest generation are living in our communities, in our neighborhoods. They are the fallen victims of financial exploitation, physical and emotional abuse and neglect. And they are afraid to speak out, because the abuser is often a member of their own family or a caregiver upon whom they depend.

July is Elder Abuse Awareness Month in Illinois. Elder abuse is a scar on our vision of a compassionate society. But we must not turn from the sight. Illinois law protects and supports victims, and it gets tough with those who act criminally. If you suspect elder abuse, please reach out to the elder who is being mistreated and make a report.

This tragedy is a reflection upon all of us and the values that define us. Our elders have given to us, now it is our turn to look out for them. Break the silence!

Shawn J. Lewis

 Shawn Lewis is a senior protective services case worker.