November 22, 2005

In appreciation for ......?

Former Mayor Stan Leach recently had a plaque dedicated to his work as mayor. It's located near the fountain at Bass St. Landing and represents the gratitude of those who made or stand to make a bundle on the work. Meanwhile, Leach leaves a city in deep debt and facing very difficult cuts in services.

This tribute to Moline Mayor Stan Leach recognizes over 20 years of service to the community and his leadership in the revitalization of Moline's historic downtown.

His continued support of Renew Moline and the public-private partnership helped turn a riverfront once called Moline's backdoor into a flourishing front door that is the pride of the city.

The sculptures, depicting children fishing in the Tom Sawyer/Huck Finn era, reflect his vision for this former riverboat landing and his love of education, history, and the river.

Mayor of Moline 1993 - 2005
Dedicated November 17, 2005
Thanks for the public/private stuff Stan, and my banker thanks you too.

So far, this "flourishing front door" looks a lot like a group of high-end businesses and expensive residential projects occupying all the prime riverfront property in downtown.

There's no easy public access, or even a view, of the river in any of the development around Bass St. Landing. Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer wouldn't know what the hell happened with Leach's "vision" for the riverfront. Leach's love of education, as evidenced by his several years of teaching high-schoolers how to make copper and silver trinkets if they decided to show up for class, and his love of history, reflected in the fact that there's not a shred of anything reflecting Moline's river history in it's downtown development aside from the self-erected shrines to Deere & Company's history and the fact that the expensive signage and decorations feature a paddlewheel and a ship's wheel, must have gotten lost somewhere along the way.

After decades of decline and stagnation, it is nice to see new buildings, new development, and hopefully, new life for downtown Moline.

But the fact remains that Moline has always had a remarkably large amount of money for downtown development compared to other Quad City towns, yet they couldn't muster anything until the past few years, and remarkably ended up in deep debt.

While public/private partnerships aren't inherently bad or undesirable, the fact that this development relied on it too heavily, in my opinion, is reflected in it's rather souless character and the fact that the general public seems to have been an afterthought in the planning. That's a shame.

Should all Moline residents share the gratitude expressed by the plaque? What do you think?

Note: I just spotted and corrected a rather embarassing typo. I'd written that there was "no easy pubic access". I regret, and am amused by, the error.


At 11/22/2005 12:19 PM, Blogger indy said...

They make it sound like any of the things that happened were Stan's ideas. Most of the time Stan rarley went to any meetings he did not have to. Let alone steer the city in any direction.
We paid him close to $20,000 with perks a year for what? Go to an administrator/council form of city goverment!
They were Brian Vandewalle's ideas. Stan never even had to vote for any of this stuff. So how does he get any credit or blame?
I guess its true the Woody Allen saying '90% of history is just showing up!'

At 11/22/2005 2:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Who says potheads can't acheive anything?!!

At 11/22/2005 3:23 PM, Blogger The Inside Dope said...

By "pothead" I assume you mean that, as an art teacher, Leach was also very fond of ceramics and, while he liked vases, stemware, and plates, he was partial to pottery?

At 11/22/2005 3:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And of course the pot he used to smoke with his students. I was one of them he used to smoke it with!

At 11/22/2005 3:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

He did stuff then that you would be arrested for now!

At 11/22/2005 6:48 PM, Blogger maybesomeday said...

I am still upset with Leach for the unprofessional manner in which he behaved during the Moline mayor election in April.

It was highly inappropriate and very disgusting the way he treated such a fine dedicated public servant -- Pat O'Brien --in public. Stan owes Pat a big apology in the very least.

TO this day, Stan has not shown any remorse for anything he said in his mailers or in public ads in the paper and Stan is spineless and no leader - and never will be. He thinks people will just forget - but I will not let Stan forget how badly he behaved until he makes a public apology to Pat O'Brien. Stan needs to say he is sorry to Pat and apologize to O'Brien for the things that he said and the way that he acted towards O'Brien- it was uncalled for...

The best thing Stan Leach could do for the citizens of Moline is move away to some place like Florida or Arizona and spare us his childish pranks and silly behaviour.

I can't stand him and have no use for him.....

At 11/23/2005 7:26 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well our taxes went up last night in Moline courtesy of the new mayor and our former mayor Leach. Wonder how much money went to the nice little plaque for Stan? And how much to make a park for him too?

Dope, I will look upon them as his tombstone. That's a good idea. Except the guy that replaced him is EXACTLY like him!! Ahhhh----help us.

At 11/23/2005 12:36 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In regards to Leach WHO CARES?!!!
They act like he really accomplished something!
He gets credit for planners, engineers, developers and a forward thinking coucil has accomplished.
Stan Leach was basicly sitting still for a few hours every week and barely was aware of what was going on!

At 11/23/2005 5:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe it's because he is a "pot--tery" lover....

At 11/23/2005 11:33 PM, Blogger diehard said...

Stan Leach should not be on the same page as JFK. In the words of General Patton he is 'Stinking up this place of honor!'


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