Thursday, December 17, 2015

Save the Courthouse

The Woodstock Historic Preservation Commission lost its battle with the City of Woodstock to prevent the demolition of Grace Hall back in 2010. Have 5½ years really passed so quickly?

The People of Woodstock ought to be sick at that action of the Mayor and the City Council. And they should be darned sure that nothing like that happens again. People, get involved. Don't just stand there like cows on the side of the road, chewing their cuds.

The Mayor has appointed a commission (or group of some other official name) to decide what to do about the new "elephant in the room". I'm sure that nobody can figure out what was going on the minds of the City Council members when they took over the old courthouse without a plan.

Perhaps "how" it happened is no longer important.

The Courthouse Advisory Commission should make short work of their involvement and tell the City to save that building on the Square and commit the necessary funds to make it safe for use. The City will never find a sucker to buy it and then make a huge and unprofitable investment in it. The only choice for the City of Woodstock, now that it's stuck with the building, is to admit that it is faced with an unprofitable investment, and then make the investment.

Last night I watched (for the umpteenth time) the documentary titled "Courthouse Girls of Farmland". Seven senior women in the town of Farmland, Indiana, joined together to make a calendar and raised $45,000 to fight the three-man Randolph County Board, when it wanted to demolish the Randolph County Courthouse. Visit the website ( and buy the DVD. Form neighborhood committees to watch the film and develop a plan to influence the Courthouse Advisory Commission.

Let the City Council know that you run Woodstock. They are just temporary bodies in their Council chairs. Write letters. Email them. Call them. You can find their names on the City's website at   (Whew! All those pop-ups when you hover on the City's website will drive you to the nuthouse!) Click on "Contact the Council". Then move your mouse to the right scroll bar and drag down to see the names and contact information.

Attend the meetings of the Courthouse Advisory Commission. You'll need your degree in Rocket Science now to find where Commissions are listed on the "new" website. Save your time. Just dial (815) 338-4300.

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