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Why is Lawrenceburg so anti-business?

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To the editor:
While the Anderson County Chambers of Commerce was removing its belongings from City Hall several weeks ago (more on that in a minute), we were told by City Attorney Robert Myles that he would not do anything about the sign ordinance until he listened to a proposal for changes by chamber members.
And yet here he is, championing a new ordinance that not only makes signage violations fineable, but Lord help those who should appeal their fine because it could then double.
If this isn’t an example of a kangaroo court, I don’t know what is.
Now matter how sweetly he phrases the law to suit the city’s needs, I cannot understand this latest injustice.
Why in the world Myles and the mayor so against small-business owners befuddles all of us.
Myles has heard several chamber members complain about how a city enforcement officer rudely and demandingly confronts business owners, even in front of customers. His response is that he’s never seen him be anything but polite and nice when he’s with him. It’s not a surprise that someone would be nice when the boss is around.
As for moving out of City Hall, the chamber received a letter signed by Myles that raised the chamber’s rent 240 percent. No conversation. No negotiation.
The chamber could never afford to move to a more visible location, but after the rent increase, cannot afford to stay at City Hall. Again, what do they have against small businesses?
In fairness, after the chamber moved, the mayor wrote a letter apologizing for such an increase, and noted it was due to the cost of the fax, etc. Come on! How much does a fax cost?
She also said that the receptionist had to answer the phone, although the chamber has its own phone line and answering system.
I bet there will always be calls to City Hall looking for the chamber no matter where it’s located.
Our town is made up of a majority of small businesses. Just look up and down the street. We are out there struggling every day to make a living. We are the heart and soul of every community. We are your neighbors. We are your hometown source. We battle every day to keep our businesses going, so why do we also have to battle City Hall?
Now for the final straw in the past three weeks. Myles is now on the tourism board and wants to see downtown lined with small businesses to support our tourism industry, according to his recent column in this paper.
So, from which side of his mouth does he speak? He wants small businesses in this town, but neither he nor the mayor can work with them, especially on a sign ordinance or complaints about enforcement. Instead, they want more money out of struggling businesses and even more if they complain.
They threw us out of City Hall, and led us to believe they were offering an olive branch by inviting us to sit down and meet before ambushing us.
We don’t understand! If you want small businesses in this town, it’s time the mayor, attorney and city council start supporting the existing hard-working folks.
We believe in this town, and put our hearts and soul into it.
For the last time, why don’t you support us?
Joan Markwell
Lawrenceburg