I am absolutely dumbfounded that our city council voted to convey McKewn street to Tarleton. What is even more shocking is that they did no research of their own before the conveyance, choosing instead to trust the figures presented to them by TAMU.

Why did it seem like a smart move to allow the appraisal to be set by the entity who would receive the most benefit from a low number? That makes about as much sense as allowing the defendant to inform the judge what his sentence should be.

While I do appreciate those council members who voted against the conveyance, I am still greatly disturbed that they even allowed a vote to take place so hastily because of pressure placed on them by TSU, who was claiming that the issue absolutely could not wait.

Did it not cause any eyebrows to raise that they threw out those ridiculously low values (and high numbers for the appraisal cost) and then chased it with "but hurry, we must act now or our whole project will be ruined!"

If anyone honestly believes that TAMU real estate directors didn't know the true value of the street, then I've got some ocean-front property in Arizona I'd like to sell you. But you better not get your own appraisal on it. Just trust me.

All kidding aside, the city lost $18,000 on this deal simply because no one was willing to stand up to TSU and say "this is our city's property; we're sorry you're in a time crunch, but we will need a few days to do our own research."

As a matter of fact, it took Councilman Jerry Warren no time at all to obtain the correct appraisal amounts (after the hasty vote, unfortunately). The reasoning for the conveyance was that the council wanted to foster goodwill in their partnership with TSU.

Goodwill is a two-way street, council, and I'm afraid that the city's lane is getting more and more narrow (as also evidenced by the one-way benefits of the Farm annexation.) So from now on, please place a little more value on the city's money by taking the time to perform independent research. Because as Tarleton grows, we will be faced with more and more of these situations, none of which should be handled so poorly again. 

Valerie Pickens,

Stephenville