When it comes to Cobb and the ARC ‘Minimal’ is Maximal
April 02, 2013 11:52 PM | 1763 views | 13 13 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Were the members of the Cobb Board of Commissioners elected to represent the people of Cobb, or to kowtow to the bureaucrats who run the Atlanta Regional Commission?

We’ll soon know the answer to that question.

The Commission is pondering which of two levels of certification to obtain from the ARC: “minimal” or “excellence.” Some of what is required for the latter designation is ho-hum stuff, like ensuring pedestrian and bicycle access in and around bus stops and promoting the creation of community gardens. And some of it is not, like its heavy emphasis on providing tax-funded multi-lingual services in key government operations for those who do not speak English, and who might have little or no inclination to learn it.

Governments can meet the ARC “excellence” threshold by taking such steps as providing multilingual websites, providing multilingual contact information via mailings, telephone or online; employing staffers who speak more than one language; printing documents and pamphlets in multiple languages; and doing “outreach” work to organizations that represent the various ethnic groups in their community.

Commissioner Bob Ott of east Cobb argued at last week’s Cobb Commission meeting that the county should stick with “minimal” certification. As he put it, his district has residents from all over the world, speakers of many languages. Why should the county pick and choose which of those languages to focus on for its bilingual services?

On the other hand, Commissioner Lisa Cupid of southwest Cobb argued in favor of attaining the ARC’s “excellence” certification, commenting that she was “quite dismayed” recently when a woman who had trouble speaking English came before the board regarding a taxi cab driver permit.

Leaving aside for now the absurdity of why the county would consider granting such a taxi permit to someone who apparently would have difficulty reading road signs, there is Cupid’s complaint that the county “had inadequate service to make sure that she was able to participate” at the commission meeting. That is, she seems to believe it is up to the county — and its taxpayers — to close “the language gap” to ensure that all those who come before the commission can be understood.

Indeed, the county formerly provided translators, but ended that service due to budget problems. And it’s not a service that should be resumed even when the budget picture improves.

There’s nothing to preclude someone who comes before the commission from hiring their own translator, or bringing along a friend who is more fluent. But using taxpayer dollars to provide translators in such situations? The county doesn’t provide attorneys for those who come before it seeking zoning changes, for example, so except in very rare circumstances, why should it pay to provide translators? If someone desires to address the commission, it should be his or her responsibility to ensure that the message can be understood.

And why should the county bend over backward — at taxpayer expense — to slow down the assimilation process for those who have chosen to come to this country? Cobb (and the state and Washington) should be pushing policies that encourage assimilation, not hinder it.

And that goes for the Atlanta Regional Commission as well.

So the Cobb Commission would do well to pay heed to those elected them — and not to pie-in-the-sky ARC bureaucrats. A “minimal” ARC certification for Cobb should do just fine.

Sometimes “minimal” is maximal.
Comments
(13)
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Watcher...
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April 03, 2013
I understand that the next "stunt" that the Atlanta Regional Commission wants to implement is: Region wide Parking Fees.

The ARC does not dream up all of their stupid ideas.

The ARC is the local front for the United Nations and their "Agenda 21" project.

Beware of the United Nations!
Quick!!!
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April 03, 2013
Grab your tin foil hat!
Watcher...
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April 04, 2013
Quick!!!

It's Coming!

Google: Agenda 21 and ICLEI

Beware of the United Nations!
Parking Free
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April 04, 2013
If there are region wide parking fees, then we will have another reason to hate the bicyclists.

"They don't pay for tags."

"They don't buy gas so they don't pay gas tax."

"They don't pay parking fees."

Hmm. Wait a cotton pickin' minute..

Perhaps these are reasons to BECOME bicyclists rather than reasons to hate bicyclists. But wait! My car makes me sexy. Or does it make me fat? Maybe exercise would make me sexy like the car commercial told me my car would do (which has yet to happen, and in fact the opposite has happened)
Kennesaw Resident
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April 03, 2013
Please remember that regional planning is very often a way to move tax dollars from the wealthier suburbs to urban areas. We should all watch these regional planning commissions VERY carefully and work to rid ourselves of them when possible.
Larry Savage
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April 03, 2013
This is "ho-hum stuff" only in comparison to some of ARC's more adventurous ideas, like rail transit.

"....ho-hum stuff, like ensuring pedestrian and bicycle access in and around bus stops and promoting the creation of community gardens."

These are things that require land and money, both in significant quantity. Cobb is already on track to spend big bucks building "Queue-jumper" facilities to try to give bus traffic an advantage over regular car traffic in hopes of attracting more bus riders. Every new investment to boost transit ridership burns finite transportation dollars. Can anyone demonstrate that any of it causes people to move from cars to buses?

Read more: The Marietta Daily Journal - When it comes to Cobb and the ARC ‘Minimal’ is Maximal
The truth
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April 03, 2013
is that most illegal aliens would be illiterate in 2 languages if they learned English. We are importing poor welfare recipients when we cannot afford to pay Social Security for seniors who paid into the system their whole lives, while subsidizing a workforce that does not value education, delayed gratification or saving for their future needs.
Larry Savage
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April 03, 2013
The ARC originated as a body to coordinate between local governments. The organization has morphed into a liberal policy advocate that also serves as the local surrogate for the Federal government, controlling the distribution of federal dollars to the locals. That has put a lot of power into the hands of largely unelected people. The ARC policy makers will use our federal tax dollars to manipulate the locals. Will our elected officials take the bait? Will the Georgia Legislature eventually act to reign in the ARC?
Oh My Goodness
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April 03, 2013
The Marietta Daily Journal literally published an editorial espousing minimal levels of literacy? What a surprise.

Pedestrian and bicycle access is ho-hum? Do you know what pedestrians and bicyclists are? They are humans. Do you know why they need "access"? Because other humans in cars believe themselves to be superior and drive negligently.

Cobb doesn't want to make a decision, so they drag out the tired old "We should not be in the business of picking winners and losers" routine. If you don't want to make decisions anymore, please retire now.

We talk until we are blue in the face about CIDs and economic development and attracting jobs to the area, but then we cut off our noses trying to make the place inhospitable to the very people we claim we want to attract.

If we just don't want people coming here, let's stop spending money on all this economic development hooey.

IF we do want people coming here, let's continue with the economic development hooey, but perhaps add some social development into the mix and pretend like we can all get along and enjoy life rather than sit around in our cages bitter all the time and angry at everyone who isn't just like us?
THIS!
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April 03, 2013
Is one of the best comments I have ever read on this site!

Well thought out, intelligent, realistic, I could go on.

I am so happy to know there are level headed people on this site. I was beginning to think it was hopeless.

Thank you.
Oh no it's not
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April 04, 2013
This comment advocates "but perhaps add some social development into the mix and pretend like we can all get along" kumbayah baloney, assuming and accusing residents of sitting "around in our cages bitter all the time and angry at everyone who isn't just like us."

I find those comment offensive on their face.

Smaller government means MORE FREEDOM. Smaller government means the government stays out of our lives and doesn't experiment socially with failed, flawed and corrupt policies. I don't care if you are a R or a D, I'll bet you don't want Tim Lee, Bob Ott or any of the others telling you how you are going to live. We must have SOME government, but to allow any politician that much power over our lives is just craziness, the misguided dream world of unicorns and la-la juice and liberals. Cobb is great because govt. has always been restrained. Public-private partnerships like the ARC and local CIDs have shown they can be corrupt, and are being used by big liberals to foist their "kill the suburb," Marxist agendas on free people around the country. Unchain yourselves and get rid of them.
dustoff
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April 03, 2013
So the lady wanted to operate a taxi, but had trouble speaking English.

So how did she get her commercial license and how could she converse with customers?

So we should spend taxpayers money to provide special help for people who don't want to learn English. No way!!

If you are going to live and work here learn English!!!
anonymous
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April 05, 2013
I wondered that one myself. If this lady can't speak enough language to communicate enough to get a permit, how in the world will she be able to pick up random passengers and speak with them about where they want to go? I mean English speaking passengers. Unless we are headed for the days that we can't hail a cab anymore unless we speak Spanish here in the good ole USA, I don't get this one at all. I own a car but have had the occasion where I put my car in the shop and called a cab to go pick it up. I can tell you this. If a driver appeared that told me "Speakee No English," I would say get the heck out of my driveway NOW. Oh, I tip about 40%, too. Their loss.
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