by Dave Noble, City News Editor
ELMHURST – On the heels of a sound City Council victory last November that shot down a proposal by evil forces attempting to lift the local ban on video gambling and taint the purity of its city, the Elmhurst Zoning and Planning Commission conceded defeat during a special public hearing on Thursday to Second Amendment “radicals” figuratively holding them at gunpoint for a decision on where permitted or conditional use zoning of firearm sales in Elmhurst will be allowed. Currently, the city’s code does not address firearm sales.
AcknowledgIng their failure to protect Elmhurst from a clandestine cell of gun lobbyists threatening to bring lawsuits against the city if the code isn’t amended to allow firearm sales, the zoning commission vowed “to take lemons and make lemonade” and turn their attention to choosing the zoning district for firearms sales that will benefit Elmhurst the most.
“I believe we will have several opportunities to take advantage of this market niche with local gun sales,” said Zoning and Planning Chairman Darrell Whistler, addressing commission members and attendees at Thursday’s hearing. “Maybe we could fill some of the empty storefronts on the ground level of the Addison Street parking garage.”
While some members of the zoning commission favored this location, others made a case for the more visible and eye-catching empty store front at the northwest corner of York and First Street.
“It’s like a block away from the Elmhurst Police Department,” said zoning commission member Lisa Nichols. “No one would dare get a gun and shoot it when the police department is right there.”
Attendees at the hearing took time to bring up other issues to consider during the public comment portion of the hearing, like whether The Elmhurst Express Trolley should stop at the future gun shop before or after the tour of local bank robbery locations, the potential tax dollars for the city every time a Glock pistol is sold in town, and the effects to the Elmhurst economy once the national media finds out about permitted gun sales and removes Elmhurst from future consideration of favorable “Top Ten” list publications.
The Zoning and Planning Commission is continuing to gather more information and feedback from the public before writing a recommendation for zoning firearm sales.