September 2019; Neighbors Unsuccessfully Request Meeting
Neighbors in September were asking why we hadn’t had a neighborhood meeting in quite a while:
Even with a president, vice president and 2nd vice president, no meeting was held during September. President Gordon Grabill was aware of the zoning issue, yet chose not to inform residents of Camelot 1. This was and is very disappointing as the proposed zoning change area is within the Camelot 1 Neighborhood Plan. Part of the purpose of our “Camelot 1 Neighborhood Association” or “C1NA”, is to:
To keep members educated and informed regarding those issues and problems which affect themselves or the Camelot 1 Neighborhood.Camelot 1 Neighborhood Association Bylaws; page 2
Obstruction, Opposition and Outrage in October 2019
Oh no! There’s opposition? | October 8, 2019
Problems with Grabill’s Views
- Just because Gordon doesn’t oppose the requested zoning change, doesn’t mean that other Camelot 1 residents do not. Prior to our neighborhood meeting, he had not made any effort to inform Camelot 1 residents other than his immediate board members. (And, that’s “if” he actually met with/informed them.) This seems inherently wrong and against C1NA’s bylaws. He could have chosen to inform everyone in Camelot 1 and listened to what residents had to say for or against. He chose not to.
- His statement, “not section 8 housing – but individually owned” is inherently flawed as the property developer/home builder is not necessarily the end property owner. The property investor who purchases the duplexes in order to rent them out would be the person who decides whether or not they are designated Section 8 housing.
- While Gordon is trying to talk about “Section 8” housing, the real problem is that we already have a disproportionate amount of multifamily housing on the Northeast side and more multifamily housing is clearly not in agreement with the Camelot 1 Neighborhood Plan.
Did I mention, don’t forget C1NA’s Neighborhood Plan….
“Due to the number of declining businesses, vacant lots, and a substantial amount of multifamily housing, the community wishes to focus on more diverse development to balance the uses in the area. To support more diverse development, this land use update recommends the following:
- the inclusion of Low Density Mixed Use land use particularly along Walzem Road
- adding Business Park and Low Density Residential land uses along Walzem Road
- and increasing Low Density Residential land uses along Eisenhauer Road.”
Sharing Info with Neighbors | October 11th, 2019
After not getting any support from Gordon regarding giving all residents of Camelot 1 a “voice” to be heard for or against, I posted the following on nextdoor.com:
Missing in Inaction | October 14th, 2019
Obscure October 14th, 2019 Email to Attorney, James Griffin
Under the Table
With your acceptance, no later than Tuesday evening, October 15, I can notify the District 2 councilwoman Jada Andrews-Sullivan, of this decision – to allow the Camelot 1/City of San Antonio Development Plan – be modified per your client’s request.President Gordon Grabill of Camelot 1 Neighborhood Association
Why was Gordon in such a big hurry for Attorney James Griffin, (on behalf of his client), to accept this by Tuesday evening,October 15th? Why was Gordon pushing this through without any input from residents in Camelot 1? Why would Gordon not wait until after the neighborhood meeting?
Offended in October
On the 15th of October, I was accused by President Gordon Grabill of “personally attacking” him. Apparently, if anyone challenges his decisions, he considers it a personally attack,–yet he can yell “SHUT-UP” at me during the neighborhood meeting, and this is not considered a personal attack?!? Go figure.
October 15, 2019 Emails
It is sad that most C1NA residents choose to avoid the issues of our area.Gordon Grabill, President of Camelot 1 Neighborhood Association (C1NA)
How are the residents of Camelot supposed to get involved with the “issues of our area” when they are not told about them?!?
Gordon Grabill Feels Personally Attacked
No Personal Attack on Gordon
The No Notification Neighborhood Meeting on October 17th, 2019
I suppose it might not be a big surprise that the Camelot 1 Neighborhood Association meeting on Thursday, October 17th, 2019 was a disaster. (Actually, that might be the understatement of the year!) Due to President Gordon’s failure to mail the postcards out on time, many people in the neighborhood had NO IDEA there was a neighborhood meeting. If a Camelot 1 resident didn’t happen to see Gordon’s post about the neighborhood meeting on nextdoor.com the day before, (October 16th), they were out of luck. While there are some neighbors on nextdoor.com, the majority of them are not. With no notification, how were the residents of Camelot 1 supposed to express their opinion regarding the upcoming zoning changes? Yet, Gordon feels free to insult the neighbors by saying “It is sad that most C1NA residents choose to avoid the issues of our area.“
Crime & Safety
Instead of posting the Camelot 1 Neighborhood meeting under “Events”, Gordon posted it in the “Crime and Safety” section of nextdoor.com. I can understand someone posting a crime under “Crime and Safety”,–but a neighborhood meeting that was supposed to inform neighbors about zoning issues? That, I do not understand, unless Gordon was intentionally trying to obfuscate information. The day OF the meeting, he posted that the time was incorrect in the “General” category. I tried my best to help by posting the meeting in the “Event” category,–but as this was a same day posting by Gordon, I doubt it did much good.
No Postcard for C1NA Secretary Either by Date of Meeting; October 17th, 2019
I guess the secretary didn’t mail the postcards out if she didn’t receive one.
Terrible Timing Times Two
Not only were the postcards not mailed out in a timely manner, the time printed on the postcards that were mailed out was incorrect. It stated the meeting was at 6:00 PM, instead of 7:00 PM. Therefore, I imagine the few people who did receive a postcard prior to the evening of the 17th, got tired of waiting at the place where nothing was happening.
Our C1NA bylaws state that “Special meetings may be called by the President with notice of the meeting given to Association members at least 48 hours prior to the scheduled meeting.” (source) This meeting was supposed to be our regular general meeting,–and yet the majority of neighbors weren’t notified until after the meeting had been held.
As one attendee said, “Too bad no one Facebooked this live”. Amen. It might have gone viral, even if there were only about 25 people or so who attended. But, I will try to describe in my own words how it went….
When I arrived, I was asked by Gordon if I would mind giving Attorney James Griffin of Brown and Ortiz the floor first. Of course, I had no problem,–I am no public speaker, but I AM passionate about letting the people of my entire neighborhood know what’s going on.
While I tried my best to let people know what was going on, I was yelled at by President Grabil and told to “SHUT UP!” The meeting sort of went downhill from there. (Actually, there really was no “uphill” in the entire meeting.) A couple of people left in disgust.
In the middle of the melee, he yelled out, “Let’s have a vote!” This was against bylaws and a Kangaroo court if there ever was one. Hopefully this “vote” will never stand up as being a true representation of the people in Camelot 1 for zoning approval.
Questions and Answers
Q. Is there anything we can do to stop this zoning change from being approved?
A. I asked Attorney James Griffin if there was anything we could do to stop this zoning change from being passed and his response was, “I can’t answer that”. (Keep in mind, Gordon already had given Camelot 1’s approval prior to the meeting.)
Q. Were there actually any, (specifically no section 8 housing), deed restrictions put in place on the property if the zoning does go through?
A. No one knows as Attorney James Griffin was never asked to produce any kind of documentation. All we know is Gordon supposedly asked for this.
Q. Are deed restrictions or covenants “air-tight”?
A. No. Take note, people, “The easiest way to elude the requirements of a restrictive covenant is to simply ignore it.” (source) Another source says, “In general, deed restrictions protect property owners and property values. If you are purchasing property in a deed restricted development or community, the deed restrictions represent somewhat of a guarantee that certain matters will not occur. As with any contract, however, deed restrictions are not infallible.” We should think carefully before putting too much stock in any deed restriction(s) as we can’t even figure out how to have a civil neighborhood meeting. Quite frankly, if Gordon can’t figure out how to get the time correct on his neighborhood meeting postcards or when to mail them out, I certainly don’t trust him to make decisions for our neighborhood.
Neighbors in Camelot 1, we need help and to work together!
What you can do to help:
Sign and Share the Petition in Opposition of Zoning Case Z-2019-10700192
For those who are opposed to the rezoning plan, please sign the petition located here: https://www.change.org/p/city-of-san-antonio-development-services-sustain-economic-growth-revitalization-for-camelot-1-walzem-rd-area.
Write a Formal Letter of Protest
You may also write a formal letter of protest and send to the following physical address or email Orlando Ramirez:
Claude Black Community Center Field Office
2805 E. Commerce
San Antonio, TX 78203
Attn: Orlando Ramirez
Attend the November 7th Public Hearing
Attend the public hearing on Thursday, November 7th, 2019 at 9 AM. Arrive by 8:30 AM if you wish to register to speak. Hearing location is downtown in the Municipal Plaza Building.
Biggest Question of All
Why is Gordon Grabill so intent on getting this zoning changed? What makes a grown man so desperate he has to yell at someone to “SHUT UP” because he doesn’t want the truth to be told? As my mom always used to say, “Where there’s smoke; there’s fire”, and I’m smelling a whole lot of something…..