In Andy Levin’s column today, he writes that the results of the upcoming election will provide clarity on how deep the anti-development sentiment is in the community. He also suggests that, even though the Board of Aldermen is voting on the project after Election Day (and before any potential anti-Austin Street winners are inaugurated), election results could affect the board’s vote.
Interestingly, I think the election of 2015 could have an impact on the Austin Street vote, even though the latter will take place six weeks before the new City Council is sworn in: I don’t think it is a stretch to say that if the incumbents prevail Election Day, a potential swing voter on the board might be much more inclined to say “aye” to the special permit than not. I’m not questioning the integrity of any members of the board, but political winds can be quite forceful.
Is Levin right? If any of their colleagues lose their jobs, will undecided aldermen be more inclined to vote “no” on the Austin Street project? And, in their quasi-judicial role, should they be responding as suggested?