Barr and Joel Bryant took their seats at the Brentwood council dais Tuesday and got right down to business. In a series of 5-0 votes, the council purchased development rights to a trio of properties, spending a total of $1.8 million to secure development rights on three parcels of land. Part of the city’s Ag Preservation plan, the acquisition of the rights on 161 acres of prime, Class A farmland just outside the city’s borders means those parcels will continue to be farmed in perpetuity.
Prior to the new councilmen taking their seats, outgoing councilmen Chris Becnel and Brandon Richey were thanked for their service, and both used the opportunity to speak their minds.
Becnel, reading from prepared remarks, reminded the community and the new council that “There are those who oppose projects for any number of reasons – the economy is too weak, it is too expensive, it is not the right time, things are great the way they are – whatever the reason, the result is the same: inaction. Brentwood needs to be very wary of the siren calls of complacency and inaction. They are an attractive trap for the unwary since it does not require anybody to do anything … There are thousands of cities across this nation, some within a few miles of Brentwood, withering and dying because they long ago succumbed to complacency and inaction.”
He also issued a warning to be wary of outside interests, “ … be they from Concord, Pittsburg – or Sunset Road, for that matter.”
Richey, for his part, was more succinct. A man who said during the public-comments period that he wanted to engage the council in dialogue about opening a medical marijuana collective in Brentwood moved the policeman Richey to leave his council chair and step up to the public podium. He said he hoped the new council would be responsive to the gentleman, and provide an answer “ranging between ‘No’ and ‘Hell, no.’”
The assignment of subcommittee roles will be taken up at the Jan. 25 meeting.