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Maplewood City Council Policy & Politics


Speaking of Liars (Rebecca Cave Gladstone Edition)

Rebecca Cave, who helped get Maplewood into such a mess back in 2006-2007 and thus inspired me to run for office, is running again for City Council in next week's special election.  As in the past, her campaign is built on half-truths and outright lies.  Besides having the backing of our old friends at the "Garbage Haulers for Citizen Choice" (who have a penchant for backing dishonest candidates), she has sent out a flyer of her own, loaded with misinformation.

For example, she harps on this "sale of Gladstone Park for housing."  She has a picture of the Gladstone Savanna Neighborhood Preserve sign, marked "Before"; and then a picture labeled "After Trees Clear Cut - 2012".

This postcard assumes most people don't know what's going on there, maybe even if they live nearby.  What's the construction in that neighborhood preserve you might have driven past on Frost?

Reality is the opposite of Cave's lie.  The Savanna isn't being torn up for housing; it's being cleaned up to be a neighborhood preserve that the neighbors can safely enjoy.  As Cave should know if she paid any attention when she was on the council, the Savanna is contaminated from its old days as an industrial site and rail yard.  Contaminants include lead, arsenic, and other poisons -- not the stuff you want kids (or anyone) playing in.  So, partly with the park funds that came from the development at the former site of the St Paul Tourist Cabins, the City of Maplewood is remediating the site -- which involves actually digging up and removing soil that is loaded with toxic waste.

Cave's cynicism -- taking an ongoing city project that is to enhance and preserve this parkland and actually make it safe for the neighborhood to use, and using it to back her lie that housing is being built there -- is breathtaking.  Or maybe she supports heavy metal poisoning for kids in the Gladstone neighborhood?

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I assume she means the "high-density housing" which she has been ranting about in her fliers, too... Which is of course code for low-income housing. Wouldn't want "those people" moving in next door.

Living just two blocks from Gladstone Savanna, I'm ecstatic about the improvements made recently. The park was previously fairly unusable unless you wanted to get covered in wood ticks as you walked through waist-high grass. I can't wait to enjoy it with my daughter come springtime.

Sometimes it's not so coded. There was an anonymous postcard when Cave was my opponent in 2007, claiming that Will Rossbach and I planned to take money away from the fire department in order to provide free housing for illegal immigrants.

The cleaned-up Gladstone Savannah will be a beautiful treasure for generations to come.

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