Recently, a request to change the zoning status of the former city-owned Coopersdale tennis courts, which was sold and then quickly resold to Councilman William Gentile, went before our city planning commission.

The request to rezone was denied.

Common sense prevailed.

This issue was then presented to Johnstown City Council to decide. Will it follow its own commission’s recommendation?

Not one resident of the Coopersdale section of Johnstown has publicly spoken in favor of the requested change of zoning from residential to C1, permitting the use of heavy equipment for a landscaping business that Gentile now wants to operate.

A very large number of residents in the Coopersdale area signed a petition in opposition.

Not one person presented anything contrary.

I would note that nowhere within city limits is there a landscaping business

– and for good reason. As you can imagine the noise, dust, traffic and everything else that comes along with such a business in a predominately residential area just plain and simple is not suited for the location.

There is another issue that council is aware of, and I would hope has empathy for. A young child who lives near this location has health issues that such a business will aggravate.

I deeply believe that this zoning change is not in the best interest of the community and will set a negative precedent.

Will council play politics or will it work for its citizens? Attend the next council meeting (Jan. 14) to find out.

Lonnie B. Rietscha