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    Posted September 20, 2012 by
    Farmersburg, Indiana
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    The Cornfield OOPs! File - September 20th


    Sometimes  we all say or do things we wish we could take back or do over. But  life, especially in these days of Twitter, smartphones, 24-hour news,  the blog-o-sphere and social media, captures almost any and all flubs,  slips of the tongue, missteps, hijinks and bad behavior.

    It's  not just politics that we find those "OOPs!" moments and actions.  Sometimes it's government, lawyers, police, churches, schools and from  across the societal spectrum. That is the case with this edition of the  OOPs! File.

    Imagine  you live or have a business next door to an eyesore. Imagine that you  have even been ticketed in the past for the trash and garbage that  litters that lot next to your property even though the city or a city  agency actually owns the property. Imagine you offer to clean up the  trash and garbage the agency turns you down.

    What would you do?

    Today's  entry comes from the "Shaking My Head in Disbelief" department. It's  about a business owner who took it upon himself to not just clean up the  eyesore, but also improve the property for the betterment of the  community. Now he is facing legal action by the city and the city agency  if he does not restore the poperty to the unhealthy and unseemingly  sight it once was including all the trash and garbage.

    Here's the story from Yahoo News:

    A  business developer in the Philadelphia neighborhood of Point Breeze is  facing legal action after voluntarily cleaning up more than 40 tons of  trash from a vacant lot neighboring his local business.

    As the  old adage goes, no good deed goes unpunished. Ori Feibush says he  visited the local offices of the Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority  four times, sent in seven written requests and made 24 phone calls to  the agency asking them to take care of a major eyesore: an empty lot  next to his coffee shop was home to more than 40 tons of debris.

    Not only did the agency fail to act but it also denied Feibush's offer to clean up the mess himself.

    But the Daily News reports that Feibush went ahead with his plans anyway, reportedly  spending more than $20,000 of his own money not only to remove the trash  but also to level the soil; add cherry trees, fencing and park benches;  and repave the sidewalk.

    "This was a lot of garbage," local resident Elaine McGrath told the paper. "Now it's gorgeous. I'm excited."

    However, the city agency was less excited, demanding that Feibush  return the vacant lot to its previous condition and saying it is  considering legal action against him.

    "Like any property owner,  [the authority] does not permit unauthorized access to or alteration of  its property," Paul D. Chrystie, director of communications at the  Office of Housing and Community Development told the paper. "This is  both on principle (no property owner knowingly allows trespassing) and  to limit taxpayer liability."

    And the situation is not without  irony. Feibush says he received a citation in August 2011 from the city  for litter on the same lot that the city now points out is not his  property.

    Nonetheless, the city's request puts Feibush in an  unusual position. In theory, he committed a good deed, investing his own  time and money to improve the condition of his neighborhood when city  authorities refused to step up to the plate. But he also knowingly did  so after the city refused his request to intervene.

    The  situation is almost like a reverse case of eminent domain, in which a  private owner is attempting to revitalize a piece of public property.

    For his part, Feibush thinks the city agency is jealous.

    "For a private developer to create a garden, it's a question of who  gets credit. To do it without their blessing, you're basically insulting  them," he said. "I'm not looking for a thank-you, but I'm not looking  for a big F.U."

    This is so idiotic. Just another example of a government bureaucracy gone amok.

    From the Cornfield, may the gaffes, the flubs, the misspeak and stupid  actions roll on...otherwise I will have nothing to write about.

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