George Briscoe Kelda Lorax Cori Stotts Karen Fields Lynda Roten Jacklyn Robinson
John Holt Jill Micka Eli Kreeger Rebecca Jim Chris Robinson Virgil Tartar
Justin Addis James Couch Cassandra Grant James Walkingstick Lois Lively
Proponents of the Proposed Miami Clean Water Protection Ordinance:
James Couch John Holt Jacklyn Robinson with Paula Johnston
There are 20 people, men and women, older and those just eligible to vote. A couple of the shyest most private people I have ever known are circulators. Cherokee Volunteers are circulators. LEAD Agency's members, our youngest and our organic farmer carried hers in neighborhoods with her daughter and our champion youth volunteer leading the way,
Some have gotten only one signature, others have met whole segments of this city. Others seek out the opportunity, they find our circulators and want to become one themselves. They find their friends, their family and they are meeting strangers who are people who like themselves want the same thing, the Right to have Clean Water and for what we have to be protected from any new violations to Tar Creek that was once so valued by this community.
A grandmother is urged on by a grandson as he understands the importance of her efforts.
Your hair dresser, your friend, your neighbor have asked this question: Want to know what is going on in Miami, OK? Someone at church, someone knocked on your door. Maybe you saw them at the Farmer's Market all summer and finally stopped to ask if you could have a shirt, too. Nott's has a bench out front, and those folks at tai chi and others at book club got a chance to sign and have.
The pickup truck parks right out front and you know to get your pen ready to sign. Lots of people who were not voters are registered because they saw voting for this could matter.
Friends of friends and long lost friends have stepped up. College students are signing because one of their peers saw this as important.
These people have been circulating among you. And this is partly why: The proponents who brought this forward, put their names on it because Tar Creek is part of their lives.
"I own property on Tar Creek," John Holt says as he reflects on the stories of his family and how they have farmed, fished and enjoyed the land and the water flowing through it for generations. Jim and Wanda Couch built a forever home on the other side of the creek. The tree line is the first thing they see in the mornings and the last thing they see as the sunsets before them. Wild grapes, native trees and sawtooth sunflowers (Helianthus grosseserratus) grow along the creek and offer the peace at the end of a day they each have enjoyed since moving there 13 years ago.
Jacklyn Robinson lives in the home she and her husband Dr. Tom Robinson built on family land that took Tar Creek from the edge of Commerce all the way to the Wal-Mart property. Tom and her boys planted trees on that piece of prairie, but the trees along the creek were their sons' playground in their youth. Tar Creek longs for the swim parties the earlier Robinson's had the summer before WWl.
These people and many more, including Paula and Tim Johnston, love this creek. A log sits along the creek for Tim to watch the wildlife, watching well enough to notice the dead fish 2 years ago and report it. The same time John Holt noticed that wood ducklings were gone after that black water settled in.
This damaged creek longs to be yours again, visited by the girls who noticed the frog eggs under the water waiting and hoping to be born to good water, not heavy metal water. And by the boys who quickly lay their bikes down in the field before diving into that water.
We each have wants and hopes for this City. And Martin Lively exclaimed, "I want to see the City join the people of Miami in this effort by embracing the opportunity to be a proactive guardian of Tar Creek. EPA and DEQ can always help, but they are not always here. We are here, and it's time for us to step up and protect Tar Creek."
Voting for this ordinance allows the community to demand the City use its legal authority to protect Tar Creek . Our circulators have found you, and collected your signature and will be accumulating the last names during this final week to ensure we have the number of eligible voters needed to bring this to the ballot for the public to approve. More than enough will have signed, and each one is valued because they each see a brighter future, a time where the City cares about the treasure this once valued Tar Creek was and will be when protected.
Our circulators are the energy this City has needed for a long time.
Respectfully Submitted ~ Rebecca Jim