Supervisor Gonser’s true views have come out on Safety Paths, Trails, Bike Paths, Wetland Protection. His views are contrary to our Township motto “Curamus Terram” – “We care for the land”.
On January 20th, an Oakland Township Republican meeting was chaired by Oakland Township’s Lead Precinct captain, John Reilly, the husband of Oakland Township’s Clerk – Karen Reilly. There were approximately 20 people there including Supervisor Gonser, Township Clerk Reilly, our Township Treasurer’s husband Joe Langlois, at least two of our Township’s Republican Precinct Captains, four of our Parks Commissioners (one left after listening to State Representative Tom McMillin) , one of our Zoning Board of Appeals members, our State Representative Tom McMillin (for a portion of the meeting) and other citizens. One of the agenda items was:
“The Republican establishment’s ‘war’ on the Tea Party and Libertarians at both the National and State Levels – What should we do?”
One of the citizens asked what is the difference between the Republican Establishment and the Tea Party Republican. During that discussion, one of the participants asked “What is this Agenda 21 issue all about?” He wanted someone to explain it and why many Tea Party Republicans have brought that up as an issue.
Supervisor Gonser then stated:
- Agenda 21 initiatives are having a significant impact on the Township
- Property rights are impacted
- It controls how property is developed
- It has to do with environmental mischief that is going on in the Township
- It is being put into our codes and ordinances
- Safety paths and trails are a big example
- Bike lane on roads are an example
- You’ve got to understand the overreaching umbrella and the strategy
- Oakland Township’s Ordinances 102 ( the nuisance ordinance) and 103 ( the performance standards Ordinance ) are clearly Agenda 21.
- Our ordinance 97 wetlands ordinance is clearly Agenda 21
- A lot of this is Agenda 21 because if you look at the overriding umbrella of Agenda 21 it is to eliminate the automobile, to eliminate all sorts of motorized transportation except mass transit and have heavy emphasis on bicycles.
John Markel, one of the Zoning Board of Appeals appointees of Supervisor Gonser, was present at that meeting. John commented that while he was driving to work on a snowy day, he realized that the safety trails are only used ‘half of the year’. He went on to indicate that he did not think it made sense to put in that costly infrastructure and only use it 6 months of the year. He agreed that it made sense in the Carolinas, but not here.
John was personally recommended by Supervisor Gonser for the Zoning Board of Appeals. His appointment clearly indicates the direction that Gonser intends to take our Township.
Although several citizens have tried to get Supervisor Gonser to explain his position on Agenda 21, this is the first time that he has verbalized his thoughts on how he believes the UN Global Conspiracy has influenced our Township’s ordinances.
So what really is Agenda 21?
In 1992 the United Nations approved a document called Agenda 21. It is a non-binding agreement signed by 178 countries. It promotes sustainable development that simultaneously promotes economic growth, improved quality of life, and environmental protection. President George H.W. Bush was among the 108 world leaders present at the UN conference when the document was adopted. A copy of the document is attached at the bottom of this posting.
Our Beautiful Township has benefited from a dedication to the protection of forests, wetlands, waterways and natural features. Many of our environmental protection ordinances predate UN Agenda 21 by many years. Now we have elected a Township Supervisor who believes our past practices are part of what the Tea Party believes is a global conspiracy. Oakland Township will not benefit from far right wing reaction to an imaginary global conspiracy.
I was an Oakland Township Planning Commission member for 26 years until 2008, and Chair for a number of years. During all those years, I had never heard of “Agenda 21”, but listened to many citizens say “curamus terrum” – “we care for our land” when they provided input that guided our recommendations. Any linkage that our Supervisor and the other extremist right-wing members of our current Board think exists between this obscure agreement at the UN, only exists in the minds of those with an extreme Tea Party ideology.
To get a better idea of what the extreme conservatives in the Tea Party believe will be the outcome of the UN Agenda 21 initiatives, please watch a video that Glenn Beck, a famous conservative, has produced to promote his book “Agenda 21” .
Why is this important to the Citizens of Oakland Township? Our Community has historically been a leader in preserving land, supporting Paths and Trails and many things that other communities have come to envy our Township for possessing. Our citizens have supported these initiatives through various millages to enhance our community. Now we have a Supervisor and Board members, our decision makers, who clearly do not support the things Oakland Township has historically stood for.
The citizens of Oakland Township need to recognize that Washington is not the only place where the extremism of Tea Party Republicans exist – They ARE the leaders in OUR Township and will be making decisions that may significantly change the character of our Township! Please get involved! Begin by looking at the many things that our Board has done over the past year that have been documented on this website.
Here is a copy the non-binding Agenda 21 agreement:
First of all, Agenda 21 is non binding, so no one really has to follow it if they don’t want to.
It is a ‘feel good’ bill, nothing more. Surely there must be more to worry about than agenda 21. The bike paths are funded by State monies, and , since the township board is representative of the people, the board can add more paths , or not. Are you riding your bike today, in minus 20-40 windchill weather.?? Don’t think so! The bike paths on roads are multi use, which means they can serve as a safety net easement for all drivers. Ever drive the roads of CT? If you go off or wander to the right of many of the back roads, even main roads, even a foot, you hit a tree, and a big tree!! That makes bike paths next to roads useful in winter, plus the snow plows can use them as a storage area. In the summer, bikers can have fun. In the winter, they, most of them, don’t ride. Spring and fall, less bikers, but still a good use. Regarding the Tea Party, every group has some rattle rousers, the real Tea party folk are the basic Mom and Pops, waiting for a common sense time to make their opinions heard. The rattle rousers are just taking advantage of the shyness of most Tea Party folk. Don’t pay attention to the rabble rousers. They don’t speak for the majority. The Republicans need to mend the fences with the core mom and pop folk, and that is another common sense discussion. For all we know , the Tea Party radicals making noise now may be a liberal ‘cell’ causing ‘issues’.
I really doubt Gosner and the rest of our board are a “liberal cell causing issues”. I think it does not matter what party they belong to, if any. What was stated in this meeting makes it clear where Gosner stands on caring for the land. Anyone, of any belief can care for the land and do it well.
What I see here is either someone trying to justify their views, using a conspiracy theory or someone who truly ignorant of how things work. Maybe it is both. They whole thing just is overwhelmingly sad.
Carolyn, sad is the most prominent feeling I have too about the state of affairs in in Oakland Township as well.
Your city is in real danger. I love your Arts and Apples. I hate Royal Oak’s Arts Beats and Eats and what it attracts because of its emphasis on alcohol. I love your trails steelhead and trout streams. Look at how many streams Oakland County downtowns have paved over. I see the homes next to the trails. Do they want to see motor vehicles in their back yards? How convenient for home invaders. Don’t change a thing, If they had their way you would see your cider mill as part of a strip mall!
Ron, I agree our township is at risk with our current leadership. Just to correct you, the Arts and Apples is something sponsored by Rochester. We are their northern neighbor, Oakland Township. Thanks for your comments.
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