Members of the Silsbee City Council met for a special workshop before their regular meeting this past Monday evening in hopes of coming to a resolution on the controversial truck ordinance issue that is up for the council's vote.
The ordinance would allow drivers of large trucks such as 18-wheelers, to bring their trucks home with them instead of parking them in business parking lots.
The concern of the council is that allowing these trucks in residential neighborhoods will cause unrest among citizens and may also damage residential roadways. The workshop was held to allow council members to discuss several different aspects of the ordinance such as permits, requirements and fees that will be instilled should the ordinance pass.
As much as the members worked together to attempt at resolving the issue of whether or not to pass the truck ordinance, no agreement was reached. Council member Adalaide Balaban stated that while she wanted nothing more than to help the truck drivers, she cannot agree with passing the ordinance without putting our neighborhoods at risk.
On the other side of the issue, favoring the ordinance was council member Thomas Tyler who stated that the group needs to come to some sort of agreement and not nix the ordinance without even trying.
"We have to try and start somewhere," Tyler said. "We're killing it before it even begins. At anytime, we as a council can revisit the issue and make changes. We have the power to undo what we have done."
Tyler went on to explain that while there are several issues that will need discussion and patience, such as permits and fines, the council needs to begin the process at some point.
A speaker, who came forth to address the council members, stated that he was a truck driver who resides in Silsbee. He stated that he did not have a problem with parking his vehicle in a public parking lot until he began to have his truck broken into.
The speaker stated that he has had diesel fuel stolen from the gas tanks of the truck as well as items that were inside the vehicle. He has since began parking his rig in the home of a friend and stated that he has had no further problem with theft nor has he had any complaints regarding his vehicle.
Mayor Herbert Muckleroy responded to the speaker with a sincere hope that the council will be able to come to an agreement and help those who are in need of this ordinance. While the workshop did not produce an outcome of a vote for or against the truck ordinance, another meeting has been scheduled for April 29 in hopes of a decision.