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Letter to the Editor 3/4/2010

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May 6, 2010 by wcobserver

Clerk Questions Angel Statue

To the Editor,

I have begun hearing a lot about the Christmas Box Angel Statue that will be placed at the Riverside Park in West Fork. I believe the park is a tax-payer supported public park.

Apparently, this decision was made by the Parks Committee in 2007. It has been stated that the West Fork City Council did not need to comment on this decision or approve a resolution.

The first I heard about this artwork was December 2009. It is pretty obvious that many of our neighbors in this community have heartfelt opposing opinions.

In February at our regular city council meeting, a lady from our community suggested a more publicized public discussion might be nice so that we can get a better understanding of the opinions from our residents.  She also suggested that now that we are accepting artwork on our public parks she may know a few artists in our local area that would truly cherish the opportunity to share their art with our town.

I would like to know the considered opinion of our City Attorney Rusty Hudson along with each of our aldermen and alderwomen. Cities that suddessfully placed this Christmas Box Angel Statue had discussion open to the public, a legal opinion, a resolution passed from the Parks Committee or Commission, and a resolution passed by the city council.

Before the work of art is placed in our public park it may be a good idea to have the city council discuss the standards that would be used to determine what art is accepted on our tax-payer funded lands and what art will be rejected.

Some cities have been urged to consider assisting in placing the Christmas Box Statue on private land, hospitals, cemeteries, etc.

Maybe the new Compassion Health Clinic would be interested with a few benches around it. The city of Stow in Ohio has a municipal cemetery with a Babyland Section that has the Christmas Box Angel Statue, also called the Angel of Hope. Maybe the City of West Fork could create a municipal cemetery, unless we already have one, and develop a special location for the Angel of Hope Statue.

It is unfortunate that so many of us in our community were not involved enough with our town to be aware of this new artwork for our absolutely beautiful parks (thank you Stephen Sprick and company). Please give us some time and hear the community’s thoughts in a town meeting like I attended when Mayor Baker was around.

Susan Cooney

West Fork Elected City Clerk

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