Trusted local news leader for Kingman, Arizona & Mohave County
Sat, Dec. 07

Letter: Kingman does not need RAID

Despite what Residents Against Irresponsible Development founder Mike Bihuniak wrote in a recent letter, RAID's actions speak much louder than Mr. Bihuniak's words. This special interest group is clearly against growth, jobs and economic development.

RAID often likes to point to a single "pro-growth" zoning request they supported on Rutherford Street to refute this anti-growth claim. Unfortunately for RAID, there are no other examples. All other RAID efforts have been to slow or completely stop economic progress in this town.

In fact, a recent Miner poll indicates that an overwhelming majority (more than 75 percent) of the people in Kingman now agree with this assessment of RAID's anti-growth activities.

Furthermore, zoning applicants should not have to meet with RAID to get its "blessing." And in any case, who gave RAID the authority to sit down with an applicant and negotiate what can and cannot be included in a zoning designation? This is madness!

We, the people of Kingman, have 1) Planning & Zoning Department, 2) Planning & Zoning Commission, and 3) elected City Council members that all play an official and legitimate role in the development of our town. And during this official process, there are a number of opportunities for the people of Kingman to be heard.

And as much as I resent the fact that RAID has hijacked the political process in this town, I also blame our city officials for encouraging these private RAID meetings to hammer out zoning applications and classifications with applicants. This practice is simply wrong. RAID does not have the explicit or implicit power to negotiate on behalf of our city with applicants.

Sure, Mr. Bihuniak likes to trumpet last November's election as their justification in supporting the "silent majority" in this town, but I have a news flash for you, Mr. Bihuniak. Most of the issues were decided upon via a couple of hundred votes between YES and NO. I am certain that the "true silent majority" will be out in force during the next election to support their family, homes, businesses, jobs and economic future given challenges that we all face today.

And if the people of Kingman really wanted RAID representing us, we would have elected RAID's new president, Harley Pettit, to the City Council. Mr. Pettit lost. Can you hear us now?

Kenneth Herskind


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