February 05, 2008

Does Bob Lowery believe complying with the law is frivolous?

A recent article in the Suburban Journal (Courts to review road decision) discussed pending lawsuits involving Koch Road. One was filed by a group of over 30 residents asking the court to overturn the decision of the St. Charles County Council in vacating Koch Road. I am co counsel on that case and we won in the circuit court as the Judge overturned the County Council's decision. The county and the developer, Hyland Green, appealed that decision and we will be presenting oral arguments on Wednesday.

The second case involves four families who purchased homes which were built on public property. The builder, McBride & Sons, and Hyland Green illegally tore out the road to build homes on it. The homes, which cost around $300,000 each, are now virtually worthless because of the public easement on which the homes were illegally built. The homeowners filed a lawsuit against McBride alleging the builder failed to inform them of this issue. This lawsuit is pending in the Circuit Court of St. Charles County.

In the article, O'Fallon City Administrator Bob Lowery is quoted as saying;
  • "I’m sure there’s lots of frustration up there and we are working for the best interests of the residents." We still feel it’s a frivolous lawsuit with the Koch Road and we’re hoping it gets straightened out with the court of appeals."

This statement is indicative of Lowery's complete lack of respect for the residents and the law. First, the residents "up there" do not believe Lowery is working in their best interest as was made clear in the story on You Paid For It and in the article. In fact, it appears Lowery is trying to protect himself since he was told by staff building permits could not be issued to build on the road. Lowery fired those employees and within days the road was illegally torn out and permits were issued. The employees have sued Lowery for their wrongful termination and have alleged their refusal to violate the law to benefit the developer was one of Lowery's reasons.

As for Lowery's statement "we still feel its a frivolous lawsuit," who is the "we" to which he is referring? Certainly not the city attorney who was quoted in the Journal as believing the county did not have a right to vacate the road. And of course the Judge who ruled in my clients favor also did not feel our claim was frivolous but apparently Lowery's is better versed in the law. One thing Lowery has shown during his tenure in O'Fallon is that he will not let the law get in the way of what he wants to accomplish. What Lowery has accomplished is ignoring the law to benefit builders and developers, a tradition in O'Fallon that began well before Lowery ever arrived. He is just the latest errand boy to carry this torch.


Anonymous said...

I think it is very "Post Dispatch' like for you to use such an unflattering photo of Mr. Lowery on your post. As you know, the St Louis Pravda Dispatch has always chose to publish the worst possible picture of any person who did not pledge allegiance to Karl Marx to accompany any article in which the person is attacked.

In this picture Mr. Lowery looks like is is about to hurl, have a baby, spend 3 hours dealing with a serious bout of the runs, or cry. I would bet this was taken at his grandmas funeral or when he had a serious bout of the flu. Shame on you Rick Fischer.

Rick Fischer said...

This picture is from the O'Fallon web site.

Anonymous said...

Actually, this picture looks just like him - he always looks like he is about to hurl, have a baby, spend 3 hours dealing with a serious bout of the runs, or cry.

Anonymous said...

Have you seen Lowery lately? That is a flattering picture of the dude. If you want to get a good look at the guy go to McGurks after any Board meeting. You won't be impressed. I guess McGurk's is the new Jordan's for the Lowery's. Watch history repeat itself.