Fellow Council Members:
I believe we have wandered from a few main goals of Recode.
I know I lost my way in my reaction to Council member Roberto’s motion on July 16th, to amend the language of Section 10.3 regarding accessory structures.
I got caught up in advocating for making the rules equal rather than making them right,
essentially allowing more neighborhoods to exclude ADU’s, which is an important tool of affordable housing. I suddenly found myself no longer on the side of affordable housing.
The intent of this code is to establish land use regulations to serve the City of Knoxville.
A. Promote the public health, safety and welfare.
It is my understanding that serving the city and promoting health, safety and welfare includes that a city should assist in providing housing for its residents. Knoxville is already suffering from a lack of affordable housing. When 1 out of 4 People in Knoxville live in poverty, and keeping the character of a neighborhood means to be exclusionary, then we are at cross purposes. It is incredibly troublesome to me that we as a progressive compassionate Council inadvertently made exclusion an option.
This amendment functionally reinforces housing segregation. I thought that Knoxville had moved beyond this type of policy, but, I fear this can be seen as reminiscent of an earlier time in our history.
I respectfully request one of my colleagues, from the prevailing side, to make a motion to reconsider the vote on the amendment to Section 10.3, and return to the previous language.
Thank you for your reconsideration.
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