In Their Own Words, “A Statistical Quandary,” By Tom Fodi

According to Jane Braunlich, the notoriously sweet sounding yet agenda driven councilwoman responsible for the “2012 Bellevue Burning Ordinance Debacle,” the justification for her “war on exterior grills” all comes down to numbers.  Per Jane’s research, last year 10 people died and $37,000,000 of property damaged resulted from grill-related accidents.

10 people!  $37,000,000 in property damage!

Where was Connie Rankin with her top dog reporter when all this mayhem was going down in our little borough due to out of control weeny roasters?!?!

What’s that you said Jane?  I’m sorry, we didn’t hear you Jane…did you say that your statistics were based on a national scale?  10 people didn’t die in Bellevue last year at the hand of radical grill mongers?  $37,000,000 of property damage was not the result of one too many burgers bursting into flame in our neighborhood?  I’m shocked!

Okay, time to be serious for a moment, at the most recent meeting of the Bellevue Council, Jane Braunlich, seeking a sound bite that would make the ordinance she drafted out to be more than the joke it actually is, quickly spouted off some statistics without clarifying their scale.  It required the questioning of a concerned Bellevue resident in the audience for her to admit that her statistics, which were her primary justification for carrying on with her quest to douse all flames within the borders of her domain, were not on a local scale but national.  Regardless of the fact that nearly 40 Bellevue residents went on record at the previous meeting of the council against this unnecessary regulation limiting the rights of private citizens wanting to enjoy a small BBQ or fire on private property, she dug up some data to “prove” that we really do need protected from ourselves.

10 people. $37,000,000 worth of property.

I wonder if Jane realizes that on average 54 people die every year due to lightning strikes in the US.  Next, we should tear down all structures taller than the tallest tree to protect our residents from lightning strikes.  It is simply too dangerous out there.

When there are serious issues needing solutions in our borough, I cannot help but scratch my head wondering why these personal vendetta’s and pet projects seem to get so much time and effort?  Especially when the majority of the people who live here want nothing of it!  Instead of focusing on the things that matter to the residents and business owners of Bellevue (e.g. BYOB consumption at outdoor tables), we’re stuck arguing over pointless, unnecessary legislation like this.

For those who care to get involved, and we encourage you to be involved, the official vote on the burning ordinance will be held on Tuesday, June 12 @ 7:00pm at Bellevue Borough Hall.  Please attend the meeting and express yourself.  Be heard.  Ask our council why we’re spending precious time arguing over where our grills can and cannot be located in our back yards, rather than discussing solutions to the ongoing decline of our business district.  Ask our council why we’re burning through finite Bellevue resources sending the fire marshall out on hundreds of personal property visits to give law abiding residents permission to grill some chicken, rather than intentionally visiting communities that are thriving in a down economy to explore ways Bellevue can do the same (see “An Unanswered Proposal” for more on this reference).  Ask our council why they decided to serve Bellevue when they don’t even believe that it can be so much more than it currently is.

Get involved, Bellevue.  Get involved.


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