Thomas Sowell once wrote that the reason to have a planning department is to usurp other people's plans.
But we like to plan here in Racine. So when Emilio and Joanna Clarke purchased property on a dreadful stretch of vacant storefronts on State Street, they went to the city planning staff for approval of their plans to open a dance hall. And they got the approval.
But then they had to face the Racine Plan Commission and Alderman Greg Helding. Helding et al have their own plans for the area, preffering office and professional uses instead.
Helding apparently thinks that other areas of the city would be better for dance clubs. Like 6th Street. You might remember that the city had plans for 6th Street to be the "Heart of the Arts" area that now is being replanned for Uptown after artists didn't cooperate.
And Racine continues to send the message to business people: Your plans don't matter.