05 Colvins buildingDear Thomas Batson, Jeremy Fiebig, Gordon Johnson, Tiffany Ketchum, George Turner, Henry Tyson and Liz Varnadoe,

I recently read an article printed in the Feb. 5-11 issue of Up and Coming Weekly, “Six to one. Mayor wins. Fayetteville loses!” It describes how the current mayor of Fayetteville, Mr. Mitch Colvin, made significant changes to the exterior of his building, the old Kress building, located downtown. These changes were made without adhering to the Certificate of Appropriateness guidelines.

This has a serious consequence, as I see it, in that you, the Historic Resources Commission, would allow this to happen. The guidelines now become moot. What is the purpose of having those guidelines if you won’t adhere to them? After all, a 6-to-1 vote by the Commission allowing Colvin’s changes says that you would rather not even consider the guidelines put into place to protect downtown Fayetteville’s appearance that would apply to any business owner who operates in a building downtown, not just someone in a leadership position. Bruce Arnold, owner of Rude Awakening coffee shop, pointed out that the changes to the Kress building violated the COA guidelines. He voted against approval as each of you could have and should have voted, yet he was made a victim by pointing out the violation. This is appalling and shows a true lack of leadership on your part.

Why have this Commission? As for actions of leadership for a personal benefit, is this another case of being handed the keys to the Ferrari just after obtaining one’s driver’s license? A similar situation with downtown property will come up again with business owners who may want to make changes to suit their personal tastes.

Rick Bryant, Fayetteville citizen

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