At the beginning of the August 12, 2014 Oakland Township Board meeting, Planning Commission Chair, Jim Carter, made a request of Supervisor Gonser to allow him to comment on the Planning Commission appointments that were going to be discussed later on the agenda. Typically these comments would be heard when the agenda item came up. Jim asked if he could provide his input during the ‘Citizen Comments’ portion of the agenda, since his father-in-law was in the hospital’s intensive care unit with ‘his chest open’. He clearly wanted to get to the hospital, but indicated that he would stay if Gonser would not allow him to speak at that time.
Amazingly, Supervisor Gonser wanted Jim to stick around and make his comments later in the meeting. Fortunately, Treasurer Langlois and Trustee Buxar intervened and asked Gonser to allow Jim to speak so he could leave. Gonser then reconsidered and allowed Jim to make his comments.
Later in the meeting, Gonser made negative comments about how the Planning Commission has treated citizens. He stated that “citizens were treated very disrespectfully”. Does Gonser’s treatment of Jim Carter seem “respectful” to you?
Here is a short video of that interaction:
Why is this important to the citizens of Oakland Township? This incident is yet another example of our Supervisor’s lack of sensitivity and his desire to have things ‘his way’. How would you have responded to Jim Carter’s request? I think very few people would have made the decision Gonser made. Gonser’s decision provides some insight into his true character. Also, his comments regarding citizen treatment at the Planning Commission are not founded in fact. Any person who has participated or watched the Planning Commission meetings knows that Jim Carter is the epitome of professionalism – A characteristic that is absent in several of our Board members, most notably Supervisor Gonser.