Friday, December 15, 2017

MoCo Planning Board ignores cemetery, stormwater concerns in approving Westbard Self Storage (Video+Photos)

Laurel Hoa of SURJ-MoCo (left) and
Marsha Coleman-Adebayo, Social Justice
Director of Macedonia Baptist Church, chant
"Boycott" moments after Planning Board approves
self-storage project by cemetery site
The Montgomery County Planning Board completely ignored testimony by Bethesda residents and Macedonia Baptist Church last night in unanimously approving the Westbard Self Storage project. It was another evening of disrespect and institutional racism on display by the Board and County Planning Department, that included the Board summoning four Park Police officers to badger protesters to put down poster board signs they were silently holding in the back of the room that said, "Black Lives Matter."
"We turned our signs 
around to white. That
seems to be a color that
is recognized in
Montgomery County"
Cemetery advocates, including Macedonia Baptist Church Director of Social Justice Marsha Coleman-Adebayo, asked the Board to modify conditions it imposed on the project to allow an archaeological study of the historic Moses African Cemetery before any construction begins in its vicinity. Coleman-Adebayo proposed a commission that would include various stakeholders, including the church and anthropologists Dr. Michael Blakey and Dr. Rachel Watkins. Blakey and Watkins are renowned in their field for their expertise in African-American cemeteries, yet Montgomery County has been dead-set against hiring them, leading many to believe the County (which has financial and political conflicts of interest in preventing those bodies from being located under parking lots behind the self-storage site and Westwood Tower) is planning a coverup of the cemetery to allow development on top of it.

The Board set the disrespectful tone early Thursday, when it proceeded to change the time of the public hearing for a third time, moving it from 6:50 PM to 5:55 PM, without advance notice to those who had signed up to testify. When speakers originally signed up, the hearing had been scheduled for 2:45 PM. This was clearly an attempt to cheat people out of being able to testify through cheap shenanigans. I question if the decision last night was legal, in light of the last-minute agenda change with no advance notice.
"I condemn each branch
of County government
for passing the buck, and
cashing it in on my
ancestors"
Outside, there was one Park Police cruiser prominently parked in front of the Park & Planning headquarters at 8787 Georgia Avenue in Silver Spring. One might have thought that was a de-escalation of Board Chair Casey Anderson's notorious reception of cemetery protesters earlier this year, when he surrounded himself with armed police officers when approached peacefully by a black woman, a white woman and a child holding petitions they want to hand him. Anderson had called in six police cruisers to confront cemetery protesters that day.

By the end of last night's hearing, Anderson had summoned four cruisers. Police were silent when the hearing began at 5:55, but at 6:40, the lone Park Police officer began to quietly request protesters to lower their signs. Such a rule does not appear in the Planning Board hearing rules, but was, ironically, instituted by Anderson following that original Macedonia Baptist Church protest this year. Clearly designed to silence the voices of those defending the cemetery against the County's nefarious plans, the rule is simply unconstitutional. The fact that it was never a longstanding rule, and was implemented specifically to silence one group this year, makes it even more difficult to defend in court.

Protesters correctly noted that no such rule was posted online when they signed up, but eventually agreed to turn their signs around to the blank white side on the backs of them. Coleman-Adebayo would later sardonically note to the Board, "We turned our signs around to white. That seems to be a color that is recognized in Montgomery County."

The officer returned at 6:50 to say he had called his supervisor, and was told any sign larger than 8x11 could not be held up in the room. When that did not get total compliance, three more squad cars pulled up out front, and three more officers entered the building. Fox 5's Evan Lambert asked Anderson about the questionable sign ban, and the Chair refused to answer. Back at the microphone, Anderson cited "time, place and manner" restrictions to the First Amendment, as a defense.
"Alright, alright," a Park Police officer,
one of four summoned by Planning Board,
admonishes chanting protesters to be quiet,
despite the meeting having ended
During public testimony, Coleman-Adebayo also recommended that a provision be added to alert the pastor of Macedonia within 24 hours of discovery of human remains or funerary relics on any of the sites in question. As it stands now, the same Board that has disrespected church leaders and the community on the cemetery issue, will have the final say on what happens to any remains found - and that worries cemetery advocates for obvious reasons.
"Shame on you.
Shame on your
entire criminal
enterprise"
Harvey Matthews, an actual former resident of the black community that was forced out on River Road by the 1960s, delivered a scathing condemnation of County officials who have "ignored, outfoxed, and slandered" Macedonia Baptist Church on the cemetery this year. The last charge refers to false statements released publicly by the County Housing Opportunities Commission alleging that Macedonia Baptist Church had divulged information from arbitration meetings over the summer. Pressed to provide evidence of such leaks, HOC has been unable thus far to do so, but refuses to retract its false statements.

Matthews condemned Anderson for hiding behind the police, and Planning Director Gwen Wright, whom he advised should change her name to "Gwen Wrong." "I condemn Roger Berliner," Matthews continued, "for passing legislation that does not protect cemeteries. I condemn each branch of County government for passing the buck, and cashing it in on my ancestors. Shame on you. Shame on this hearing. Shame on your entire criminal enterprise."

"I share Macedonia's contempt for this board," activist Kevin Berends testified. He blasted their attempt "to normalize desecration." Berends likened the County government to a "four-headed monster," which serves a fifth, "unseen monster, your corporate benefactors."
"Talk about animus.
That's below the belt."
Laurel Hoa of Showing Up for Racial Justice - Montgomery County noted that the Matthews family land on River Road, which they were forced off by developers in the late 1950s, is now worth $60 million. She denounced the Board's institutional racism, saying it was a textbook case of "decisionmakers holding oppressive power over a community," a point driven home by the poster controversy.

Equally controversial and racist was the Board's treatment of the church, which is actually a party to the Westbard Self Storage and Regency Centers development plans, as the contemporary representative of the cemetery that was bulldozed in the 50s and desecrated in the late 60s. The church should have a seat at the table just like the applicants' attorneys. Instead, they are forced to remain silent in the back of the room.

When Hoa asked if she could read the portion of Coleman-Adebayo's statement left out by time restrictions, Anderson saw fit to take a cheap shot at Coleman-Adebayo. Clearly annoyed by the ongoing media attention (but still not embarrassed by it), Anderson said, "She can say it to the camera in the hallway," referring to the Fox 5 news crew. "That's really mean," Coleman-Adebayo replied from the back of the room. "Talk about animus. That's below the belt."

Cemetery advocates waited patiently in silence for the Board to respond to the substantive cemetery issues raised by speakers. They instead talked briefly about stormwater concerns raised by the Little Falls Watershed Alliance, before dismissing them. They next talked about art. Art, instead of the bodies of the first freed slaves in the state of Maryland being acquired by corporations and government.

And then, just when you thought you couldn't be shocked anymore by the racist and inhumane actions of this Board and County Council, it was time for collective jaws to drop again: Anderson called the vote. He and his colleagues did not say a single word about the cemetery, voted to approve the self storage project, and dashed out of the room as protesters chanted, "Boycott!" and "Black Lives Matter!"

WATCH: Click here to watch moment Westbard Self Storage is approved

On the way out, protesters sparred verbally with one of the owners of the self storage project. Church officials say he had initially agreed to allow them to conduct an archaeological study, but withdrew the offer under (surprise!) pressure from the Montgomery County Planning Department. Meeting with officials at Macedonia Baptist Church earlier this year, his attorney advised him to grab his things and leave immediately. "You came to our church and insulted us," Coleman-Adebayo said, "and then you left with your lawyer." "I did not," the owner replied. "Yes, you did," Coleman-Adebayo said. "So, you may have won here, but you need Bethesda residents to put their things in your storage company, and we're not going to do it, so good luck."

Stormwater advocates didn't fare much better. While a few of their concerns were briefly discussed, the Board ultimately made none of the substantive changes the Little Falls Watershed Alliance had sought. LFWA's Sarah Morse had stressed the need for sufficient groundwater to recharge the Willett Branch stream when it is naturalized. The official in charge of stormwater management at Parks & Planning disputed that, saying the fill dirt and clay present at the site would not transmit groundwater effectively to the stream.

Citizens once again ignored by the Planning Board were then asked to vacate the premises by the four Park Police officers, who said, "We have to lock up the building." They walked out the door to find the four police cruisers parked in front of the entrance.

47 comments:

Andy Van Slyke said...

The only reporter covering this issue the way it needs to be heard. Thank you for the efforts to bring justice!

Anna said...

Useless article, so full of opinion and bias it's practically unreadable.
FAIL.

Robert Dyer said...

7:39: Which sentences are false in the article?

Anonymous said...

Hoa is another insane drama queen. From her Facebook:

"This picture sums up the evening. Cops trying to intimidate a Black woman out of her first amendment right, at the orders of the Planning Department...While ignoring the multiple White women who were holding signs, I might add."

Anonymous said...

Dyer publishes this article at 7:31 AM (Dyer Standard Time), "Andy Van Slyke" comments just 4 minutes later. It's magical!

Anonymous said...

Isn't Coleman-Adebayo the leader of the group? Wouldn't it make sense the cops would talk to her if she is the director of social justice? I don't think it was a racist thing they would speak to her instead of other protesters. Hoa just wants to make this out to be the cops are the problem and the divide is along race.

Anonymous said...

The "buried lede" is that the protesters were mostly white.

Anonymous said...

you should read about her time working for the federal government. What a whiner!

Anonymous said...

Here is how the Supreme Court has ruled regarding the First Amendment right to "petition government for the redress of grievances":

"Nothing in the First Amendment or in this Court's case law interpreting it suggests that the rights to speak, associate, and petition require government policymakers to listen or respond to communications of members of the public on public issues." -O'Connor, Sandra Day. "Minnesota Board for Community Colleges v. Knight, 465 U.S. 271 (1984)". Justia.

And it certainly does not entitle people to disrupt lawful government meetings just because the mood hits them.

Anonymous said...

I don't understand these protesters at all. Why do they think they are entitled to disrupt public meetings. Not a fan of the planning board, but it seems to me that shouting the entire time during a meeting to a get a point across is not going to change anyone's opinion but just further push people against you.

Anonymous said...

"[I]t seems to me that shouting the entire time...to a get a point across is not going to change anyone's opinion but just further push people against you."

Standard Operating Procedure for Blogger Robert Dyer.

Anonymous said...

Anna, thought you'd enjoy this:

https://img.wennermedia.com/article-leads-horizontal-800/rs_womentrolls-03682fb3-e791-45c2-a800-ee70e02868d0.png

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Robert Dyer said...

8:24: The only chanting was after the meeting adjourned. There was no disruption during the meeting.

Anonymous said...

"leading many to believe the County (which has financial and political conflicts of interest in preventing those bodies from being located under parking lots behind the self-storage site and Westwood Tower) is planning a coverup of the cemetery to allow development on top of it.

Weasel words. How many?

And you use way too many parenthetical phrases in your writing, which suggests disorganized thinking on your part.

Anonymous said...

The banning of signs certainly infringes on free speech.

Anna said...

8:32 Once again marginalizing women who speak up.

7:54 False is your word. I used opinion and bias.

Anonymous said...

I am going to make sure to support this business. I've had enough of this batty church and their nonsense.

Anonymous said...

I agree, the county is marginalizing the women speaking up against this insane plan to desecrate the cemetery.

Anonymous said...

If only the cemetery wasn't sold and already built on, then this would be so much simpler. The county is not marginalizing the women speaking out, the women are receiving the same time and ability to speak out as everyone else. This unfortunately is not the narrative they are trying to tell so they are quickly jumping on the marginalized wagon. The fact this issue has made it as far as it has shows the planning board has been more respectful to them than they should have been. It's time for the craziness to end and we can all move on with our lived.

Anonymous said...

@9:39 The banning of signs inside a public meeting is not a 1st amendment violation. The protestors are welcome to walk on the sidewalk outside with their signs.

Ever notice you don't see the audience at Congressional hearings holding up signs? Surely some group would have sued to allow for it, if they had standing, which they don't. Those groups are welcome to protest as much as they like outside.

I knew Coleman-Adebayo back when she worked at the EPA (and went by just Coleman then). She was a nutcase then, though still quite personable.

Robert Dyer said...

10:48: Wrong. The entire building is as public as the sidewalk. It's our building. It belongs to us, and we're the bosses of the people who work inside of it.

If she was a "nutcase," how did she manage an unprecedented legal victory over a federal government agency? Think about it.

10:31: So you don't mind if we build a garage on top of your family's graves? If you protest, will we able to call you "crazy?"

The Planning Board has fought against the church tooth and nail from Day One on this. You gotta ask yourself, what's in it for them behind the scenes, that they're so crazed to ram Westbard through even if they become nationally known as racists in the process? Again, Think about it.

Anonymous said...

There is a parking lot on there graves already tardo

Anonymous said...

It isn't racist to build a parking garage ontop of a parking lot. The same parking lot you park on to protest...

Anna said...

Nobody answers the question---Why isn't there a title company on the hook for this?

It's pretty kooky how nobody was protesting or marching or insisting on a museum or name-calling the owners, or paying any attention to this until the land was sold and a new development plan was unveiled. If the land hadn't been sold and re-envisioned, would there still be protests? It's not like this information is new.

Why hasn't this been a big deal for the past 50 years? Why suddenly is it unconscionable to leave the site alone and do nothing?

I have lots of questions.

Anonymous said...

Dyer, you are absolutely wrong about this: "Wrong. The entire building is as public as the sidewalk. It's our building. It belongs to us, and we're the bosses of the people who work inside of it. "

Just because a building is pubicly-owned doens't mean people have a first amendment right to enter it and protest at any time. Do you think you can just walk into an elementary school and interrupt a teacher's class? How about the Glen Echo Fire Department at 2am while they are sleeping? How about a courtroom while court is in session? Can you walk into the Seven Locks jail and demand they open the doors and let you protest in there? All are publicly-owned property, and I guarantee you'll end up arrested if you try it.


Anna said...

10:55 - Wrong! You don't have on-demand access to public buildings. That's not how it works. What? You think we all should have keys?

Nutcases can't be successful? Pshaw! Of course they can...and are.
(General comment-- I know nothing about Ms Coleman-Adebayo)

Anonymous said...

@12:39 You're being too logical. It's not about the cemetery. It's white anti-Westbard NIMBYs who have created and co-opted the church's cemetery "cause" for their own benefit.

Notice the protesters never claim the land was stolen or the result of a fraudulent deed, because it wasn't. The land was sold fair and square, by the church's own members. They should be blaming them for selling it, but that doesn't fit their narrative.

Anonymous said...

Do the protesters see the irony in 11:52's statement? They are parking on the land they are protesting for.

Anonymous said...

"Shame on you. Shame on your entire criminal enterprise"

You'd think that someone who works for a church, would understand how to persuade and to reach common ground, rather than to alienate everyone who is in a position to help. She and Robert Dyer are two peas in a pod.

Anonymous said...

There is s great deal of animus and misinformation in these comment.

1. Macedonia Baptist Church never owned the cemetery or the underlying land. The land was initially owned by an unrelated fraternal organization, which did indeed sell it. The circumstances of the sale are unclear. It is unfair to blame Macedonia Baptist Church for the actions of the fraternal organization.

2. Macedonia Baptist Church is pursuing this matter because it is the only remaining institution of the former African community at Westbard. The church also represents the former members of that community and descendants of those buried there. (Living descendants have been identified.) It is reasonable for the church to participate in establishing the parameters of the archaeological study and in approving the archaeological team. What is not understandable is why the Planning Board and the Planning Department have been blocking the church, rather than welcoming its participation in the study process.

3. It should be noted that Montgomery County officials kept the existence of the cemetery under wraps while the Westbard sector plan was being considered. The sole public event at which the cemetery was discussed was a December 3, 2015 Planning Board work session dealing with park-related matters at Westbard. Although Planning Director Gwen Wright was briefed on the existence of the cemetery in February 2015, this matter was not discussed at public briefings about Westbard's history, at Planning Department hearings open to public testimony, at Planning Board hearings at which public testimony was taken, or at County Council hearings on Westbard.. Drafts and the final version of the main body of the Westbard plan had only 2 sentences on the cemetery, stating that land along the Willett Branch stream had been purchased for use as a cemetery in the early years of the 20th century and that the cemetery was no longer extant, the land having been sold in 1958. That the cemetery was believed to lie on the Westbard development site was never discussed in the drafts and final version of the main text of the Westbard sector plan. While additional detail appeared in the Appendix to the sector plan, this material was not made publicly available until *after* the sector plan had been approved by the County Council. Why was information pinpointing the location of the cemetery never widely revealed to the public until after the sector plan was adopted? This contravenes best practices on cemetery sites slated for development, which recommend that archaeological investigation occur as early as possible in the planning process. Does Montgomery County want a Planning Department that hides material information on a sector plan from the public, and which does not follow best practices related to cemetery investigation on development sites?

4. The charge that Macedonia Baptist Church is being co-opted and manipulated by "white NIMBYs" is offensive and unsubstantiated. The Church's pastor is a professor of aeronautical engineering with a PhD from MIT. Marsha Coleman-Adebayo, the church's social justice chair, has a PhD in political science, also from MIT. It is unfair and inaccurate to suggest that the Church's leadership can't think for itself.

5. No matter whom you support on the matter of Westbard, it seems apparent that the Planning Board pays minimal attention to public testimony-- in this case, the Planning Board gave little weight to the views of the Little Falls Watershed Alliance and the church. In addition, Planning Board Chair Anderson was openly sarcastic to Marsha Coleman-Adebayo. Does Montgomery County really want a Planning Board that routinely dismisses the views of the public and which condones the sarcastic treatment of some who testify before the Board? Remember that Montgomery County tax dollars pay for the Planning Board, the Planning Department and their activities. They work for the public and should treat all members of the public with respect.

Robert Dyer said...

11:52/1:05: Protesters have not parked in that lot to protest - it's private property, for the use of Westwood Tower residents. We walked over to the site from Macedonia Baptist Church.

6:15: That was Harvey Matthews who said that. You may not have been following this story from the beginning, but the church and descendant community have been treated with disrespect by all related government departments. It has been a display of institutional racism from the beginning by Montgomery County.

12:51: Schools, FBI headquarters, etc. are locked down from the general public for specific reasons. But wherever a member of the public has access, they also have 1st Amendment rights. So a student in a public school has a right to carry a protest sign. Likewise, when attending a Council or Planning Board meeting, the public has the right to protest or hold a sign.

12:53: So if white people are standing in solidarity with the church simply to serve their own selfish ends, I assume you also believe that the County Council is only standing with immigrants because of the political power they can extract from that? Think about it.

Reality: I've been fighting for various causes for years, and I've yet to get any personal or political benefit out of it.

Another reality check: The church never owned the cemetery, and most certainly never "sold" it. No one knows what happened when the cemetery was sold by the fraternal organization that founded it, or why they even sold it. One of the next landholders was responsible for bulldozing the headstones to hide the graves.

Anonymous said...

"Matthews condemned...Planning Director Gwen Wright, whom he advised should change her name to 'Gwen Wrong'."

This is just childish. What did Matthews hope to accomplish by saying this?

Anonymous said...

"Church officials say he had initially agreed to allow them to conduct an archaeological study, but withdrew the offer under (surprise!) pressure from the Montgomery County Planning Department."

Bullshit.

Anonymous said...

So what are they going to "boycott"? A self-storage facility that they didn't plan to use in the first place?

Anonymous said...

So it looks like there are a total of 9 protesters, 5 of whom are white. Given that 2 of the 5 are the Adebayos, who have no personal connection to the cemetery, a turnout of at most 3 among the "descendant community" is not impressive.

Anonymous said...

10:01 here - Second sentence should have been, "Given that 2 of the 4 African-Americans are..."

Anna said...

Robert @4:24AM said
"Another reality check: The church never owned the cemetery, and most certainly never "sold" it. No one knows what happened when the cemetery was sold by the fraternal organization that founded it, or why they even sold it. One of the next landholders was responsible for bulldozing the headstones to hide the graves."

Is it just me or does that sound more like support for the other side?

Anonymous said...

There is a hearsay statement about someone who says that he heard someone say that he saw construction workers moving the bodies. Is there any testimony about "bulldozing the headstones"?

Boyce Bowles said...

The developer's PR firm always moves swiftly in posting comments here attacking Dyer & the church. According to their contract with Regency, part of their mission is to control the message and quash the opposition.

I hope the church and Bethesda residents stand strong.

Whose side do you want to be on- the church, the souls of freed slaves and Bethesda residents or a tone deaf out of town developer? History will judge us.

Robert Dyer said...

10:14: No, it doesn't. Past church members are buried there, but the church didn't own the cemetery. They are still a party to it by virtue of the former.

11:02: Corroborated by the architect's son. Bulldozing is obvious: the headstones were there in the 1950s; sometime after that, they were plowed under. The question is, whodunnit?

Anna said...

7:38PM - Like I said, it does to me.
It sounds like:

1) The church never owned the property
2) The church was not involved in the cemetery, the maintenance of, the sale or even knowing the reasons for the sale.
3) One of the next landowners is responsible for the desecration

"According to their contract with Regency, part of their mission is to control the message and quash the opposition. "
I call BS. Convenient to post a claim like that under an alias.
Let's see the contract.

Anonymous said...

"Coleman-Adebayo said[,] 'So, you may have won here, but you need Bethesda residents to put their things in your storage company, and we're not going to do it, so good luck.'"

8 protesters, about half of whom do not actually live in the customer-shed of the facility. That's really gonna put a dent in their market. LOL

Anonymous said...

"Citizens once again ignored by the Planning Board were then asked to vacate the premises by the four Park Police officers, who said, 'We have to lock up the building.' They walked out the door to find the four police cruisers parked in front of the entrance."

I'm trying to figure out what exactly Robert Dyer is insinuating here. Should the building remain open indefinitely after the business of the Commission is finished? What would be the point of allowing the protesters to remain in the empty building, in the absence of anyone who would "hear" them?

Anonymous said...

Robert Dyer, I am curious as to how this family was forced off the land by developers. Did the developers take the land with no compensation or did they buy the land? I am genuinely wondering how these things occur because it is not unique to Westbard. How can they just forcibly steal land from people rather than buy land from people? Presumably the land was sold and bought, otherwise a crime of theft would have occurred and even in the 1950s should have triggered outrage and legal repercussions.

Do you have any more details?

Anonymous said...

@5:56 AM: According to Harvey Matthews, who grew up in the community, some of the African-Americans who owned land along River Road were taken out drinking by the developers' reps and signed unfavorable contracts during the drinking sessions. Others had limited literacy, and signed contracts on the basis of verbal promises that were never kept. Yes, the land was sold, but under dubious circumstances. Unfortunately, many the African-American landowners who were turned out often did not have the money for legal representation.

Remember, too, that the land was sold to developers in the 1950s, prior to the Civil Rights Act. Montgomery County was hardly well-integrated in the 1950s and the rights of the black community were given short shrift. Example: Harvey Matthews attended a segregated public school in Bethesda before implementation of the Supreme Court's decision in Brown v. Board of Education.

Anonymous said...

@3:46 AM: Of course no contract will use terms like "control the message" or "quash the opposition," and Dyer knows that. As you are likely aware, Dyer was exaggerating for effect. And if you did not understand that exaggeration was being used to underscore a point, you are far too literal when you read.

As to your contention that the church's non-ownership of the cemetery site invalidates its standing to protest development plans, I respectfully disagree. The church is the only remnant of the African-American community that once existed along River Road. Thus, the church is the obvious organization to protest.

Anonymous said...

@12:39: Yes, it is puzzling that there was no protest about the cemetery back in the 1950s, when the land was sold, and when the headstones were plowed under. But times were very different back then, and the surrounding black community was losing its land and being forced out of the area at the same time. The situation was no doubt worsened because Montgomery County was heavily segregated and black communities had little influence.

With the passage of time, it is understandable that very few knew about the cemetery. Evidence of the cemetery was first reported in early 2015, when the Planning Department's historian uncovered records of the cemetery while researching Westbard's history in the context of rewriting the Westbard sector plan. This information was not made available to the general public until the online posting of the Appendix to the Westbard sector plan in the summer of 2016, several months after the sector plan had been approved. , Around the same time, County planners revealed the history of the cemetery site during public discussions of the developer's sketch plan and the creation of an adjoining greenway. The cemetery is thought to lie on the proposed greenway site.

A couple of key points:

1. The existence of the cemetery on the Westbard site was not known to the Planning Department until early 2015. How were the public and the church supposed to know about it, if County planners did not? It is clear that the existence of the cemetery had been forgotten between 1958 (the year of sale) and 2015 (roughly 57 years).

2. The Planning Department chose to keep the information about the cemetery "closely held" until the summer of 2016 (a few months after the Westbard plan was approved.) Shortly after this information became public, the church began asking the County and the developer for a satisfactory archaeological study of the site and the creation of a fitting memorial. This tracks with the public release of information about the cemetery. The logical inference is that the church learned about the cemetery at about the same time that the general public did, and acted on that information fairly promptly, If anyone was sitting on information about the cemetery, it seems to be the Planning Department (from early 2015 until the summer of 2016), not the church.