Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

Thumbs up to a Jamestown woman for pursuing her business. Jill Laemmerhirt had planned to open Endless Love, a retail business, in a Fairmount Avenue plaza in Lakewood. The Lakewood Planning Board approved a permit for Laemmerhirt’s business, but the deal fell apart when the plaza owner decided not to lease her space for the shop. Then, the Lakewood Village Board approved a six month moratorium on adult-themed businesses because there was nothing in the village’s zoning laws about such adult enterprises. Laemmerhirt then found a new location and began setting up shop when Charles Smith, village code enforcement and building inspector, served her with a citation. A judge ruled the village’s attorney and Laemmerhirt’s attorney should work together to find a workable solution. To be clear, Laemmerhirt has precautions in place to make sure impressionable youth aren’t entering the store and there is no suggestive advertising or signs on the front of the shop. Her business is as legal as a coffee shop. The solution, frankly, is to let Laemmerhirt open her business. Traffic and profitability should determine whether or not it is a bad idea, not the board’s notion of what constitutes an “appropriate” business.

Thumbs up to members of the county’s Audit and Control Committee for realizing what is blatantly obvious to county residents. The way the county handles pay raises for elected officials is flawed. The commission is right to flat-out reject the proposed pay raises as well as realizing the existing system is flawed. Now that they have acknowledged the problem, we are interested to see what the legislature intends to do about it.

Thumbs up to the recent reopening of Midway Park’s historic carousel roundhouse. For the past four years, the popular 1946 Herschell Carousel has been located in a parking lot due to the deteriorated condition of the 1928 roundhouse building which sheltered it. The project to stabilize the building, replace the roof, repair windows, install new pathways and add new cedar benches is now almost fully completed. The carousel horses have had their old paint stripped off and received a base coat of paint. The last piece of the project is to fully repaint the horses – the saddles and tack and bright colors for the saddle pads and trim. The Friends of Midway are accepting $1,000 sponsorships for the carousel horses for which an artist will decoratively paint a chosen horse in a period-appropriate color palette. When they’re done, perhaps it’s time to start planning restoration of the park’s long-forgotten skating rink.