November 22, 2014


UPDATED: Columbia Gas repairing gas leak at Wilkes Villa

Elyria Fire Department crews block off a portion of Fuller Road. CHELSEA MILLER/CHRONICLE

Elyria Fire Department crews block off a portion of Fuller Road. CHELSEA MILLER/CHRONICLE

The Elyria Fire Department evacuated two buildings at Wilkes Villa and blocked off a portion of Fuller Road Thursday morning.

According to the fire department, a gas leak was caused by construction at Wilkes Villa. Two buildings to the northwest of the leak – the day care center and a maintenance building  – were evacuated.

Elyria Police say there was no concern about a possible explosion, and the buildings were evacuated as a precaution.

Columbia Gas is working on repairing the leak.

Check for updates.

  • golfingirl

    Why? Should just light a match and run!!

    • Alan Pugh

      Seven positive votes and no negative votes for someone suggesting the outright destruction of homes of impoverished and struggling people. This is why this county is suffering so much. Your post is embarrassing and makes me embarrassed to be associated with this county.

      • golfingirl

        I suppose that tells you there really is littler tolerance for the positions of Democratic Socialists in this country.

        We are fed up with crime, and equally as tired of the attempts by certain groups who play the “you have no compassion” card every time we say enough is enough!!

        Fact is, these housing projects have been subsidized by the taxpayers since they were built. And how have we been thanked for our generous “donation” to these residents? By their acts of violence and crime, often against the very people who pay for them.

        Americans are some, if not the, most generous people in the world. The problem is when the government gets involved. The result is crime-infested housing projects like this one. It is a blight on the city and just one reason why property values continue to decline in Elyria.

        Take your Marxist agenda elsewhere. People here are fed up with paying for those who choose not to work, have multiple children out of wedlock, commit crimes and use drugs!!

        “This is why the country is suffering so much,” as you say above. You know, as well as I do, many of the people living there have made choices which placed them into their living situation. So how much more of my paycheck do you want to pay for this garbage? Another nickel, maybe a dime out of every dollar I make? Give me a number?

        Oh, by the way, you never did respond to my question on the Illegal immigrant story. I’ll ask it again here. Should we allow all people who want to enter this country unfettered access, no documentation, no rules. Where is the line drawn in the socialist community you belong to?

        • Alan Pugh

          All I can tell you before I retire for the night is that if you think Democratic Socialism (the Scandinavian model) and Marxism (the ideology of a path to Communism) are the same thing, you need to do some reading. A lot of reading. By the way, I fall into neither category.

          Personally, my ideological perfect world is no borders at all, but that’s not going to happen with the xenophobia that runs rampant in modern society. That said, “unfettered immigration access” is not a socialist policy — it’s a free market capitalist policy supported by the fathers of modern capitalism, such as Friedman, Hayek, and the illegal immigrant Ayn Rand.

          • golfingirl

            No, that is not going to happen not because of xenophobia, but because of the need for security in this country. A world without borders and state nations? Good luck with that one.

            Most Americans know this fact, there are enemies to the United States who feel that a mass killing of U.S. citizens guarantees them 40 virgins as a reward. We will protect our families from such evil, and yes it begins with keeping these people out.

            How can you be blind to the fact that evil does exist in the world, and much of it is directed toward America? Open the borders to all and we are asking for whatever walks through the door. I for one am not willing to allow this to happen, for the sake of my children.

            Give me the name of a single country, anywhere in the world, which has embraced Democratic Socialism in its entirety. Some may have adopted specific parts of the ideology, such as Canada, with universal healthcare, but none allow free flow of immigrants into their countries.

            Where we disagree, is you don’t see the world as a dangerous place, I do. You want no borders, I say we need them. How can you have any country, without borders? By definition, all countries are defined by their geographic boundaries.

            The names you quoted above want as many workers as possible, to drive down the wages for all people. So we are all equal in income and living conditions. I believe you should be rewarded for accomplishment and hard work, not required to share it with people who are along for a free ride.

            Does this make me less compassionate than you? I think not. But charity is not the government’s concern. We have all seen the waste, and the people who take advantage of it. This is what we are fed up with.

            I am a capitalist, you are a socialist. You can define the terms anyway you like to make your points, but at the end of the day they are very different, whether it is a Marxist version, or some other form.

          • Alan Pugh

            “How can you be blind to the fact that evil does exist in the world, and much of it is directed toward America?”

            Please quote where I said that evil does not exist in the world. I am trying to find it, and I would like your help.

            I am aware that many people hate the actions of our country over the past couple of centuries… people like the natives from which we stole this country, the slaves which we abused to build this country, the people throughout the Caribbean and South America whose governments we’ve overthrown when they didn’t want to allow our exploitation… There are a lot of people with a lot of reasons to hate American capitalist ideology.

            Are you aware of the Banana Massacre, in which the US Government threatened to send the military to break up a Colombian farmers’ strike if the Colombian government did not stamp it out? That act of violence resulted in approximately 2,000 deaths in order to protect the cheap labor costs of the United Fruit Company.

            Do you know of our direct aid, training, and arms provided to right wing terrorists in South America when socialist governments are democratically elected, one of the most obvious being the coup against Salvadore Allende on September 11th, 1973? We’ve repeated this strategy in several countries, sometimes failing against the citizens of those countries as we did during the 2002 coup attempt in Venezuela.

            So yeah, people hate us sometimes. Perhaps we could be slightly less exploitative of others and repair our tarnished historically accurate reputation. That said, most people who come here want the same thing you do: They want to live in a country of abundance and freedom. It doesn’t matter that we got here through the Monroe Doctrine and slavery and theft, they just want their own little piece of the American dream they’ve heard so much about.

            “Give me the name of a single country, anywhere in the world, which has embraced Democratic Socialism in its entirety.”

            Norway. Denmark. Sweden. The Netherlands. To a large extent, Germany. Universal healthcare, free education, guaranteed cost of living wages, workplace democracy and cooperatives, subsidized shelter, never letting someone slip through the cracks.

            Democratic Socialism is a broad term that basically means an advanced welfare state based on progressive redistribution and a democratization of the economy, allowing the people to decide how the money is invested. It takes place alongside a regulated market. It’s not North Korea, no matter how much some folks want to believe this.

            The countries I named above have some of the best GINI coefficients, unemployment rates, health statistics, and outright quality of life statistics in the world. Their methods WORK, by any economist’s view, and by any citizen’s view. These countries comprise four of the top five on nearly any chart you read on economic, educational, health, happiness, or success indicator except for one: “Most millionaires and billionaires.” They sacrificed stratified wealth where a few get to be rich beyond any meaningful usefulness to make sure everyone could live a life of plenty. The people at the top still have it great, but so do the people at the bottom. That’s the difference.

            “The names you quoted above want as many workers as possible, to drive down the wages for all people.”

            Yes, that’s what free market capitalists want.

            “So we are all equal in income and living conditions.”

            No, in a free market, wealth is stratified into an owner class… all the workers may struggle, but there are still billionaires profiting from your work while sitting in their plush offices.

            “I believe you should be rewarded for accomplishment and hard work”

            Then why do you believe in a system in which you work for someone else and they get to steal the excess value of your labor? You’re creating, say, 40 dollars in profit per hour but your boss keeps thirty and gives you ten? How is that rewarding hard work? Worker cooperatives like Modragon in Spain provide the full value of a worker’s labor because they don’t have to pay millions to executives and stockholders. That’s fair.

            “I am a capitalist”

            You are very likely a supporter of capitalism. I doubt you’re an actual capitalist. If you work for someone else and they decide how much of your value they will give you, you are not part of the capitalist class. I just wanted to put this out there not to correct you and be a jerk, but to point out another key difference between capitalism and socialism. If I believe in democratization of the workplace, I’m a socialist, because we’re all in it together. If you believe in a working class that trades their labor for subsistence, you *support* capitalism, but you’re not an actual capitalist unless you’re an owner. It’s a divisive, tiered structure.


            As an afterthought, I know we vehemently disagree, but I want to thank you for not coming at me with “you hate freedom and you’re an idiot.” Your respectful tone and use of actual words to make your points is a breath of fresh air. When you asked if your views made you less compassionate than me, I agreed with your response that it does not. You clearly care about the people as much as I do, we just have different ideas on how to get there. I respect you for that.

          • golfingirl

            Also, I do not suffer from xenophobia. I have no “fear” of foreigners, only those who are on a mission to harm us.

            Take off your idealogical blinders and cast away your naivety. There IS a lot of evil in the world and I want to keep as much out as possible.

            We already have our share of the home-grown variety here, don’t need add to it.

      • Pablo Jones

        This from the person who would gladly kick a rich person out of their home and confiscate and redistribute their wealth. It isn’t about improving people’s lives and bringing up their standard of living, it is about keeping them where they are and bringing everyone else down to their level.

        Those 7 positive votes were for people in support of removing the government housing cesspool, which would be in the best interests of those living there.

        • Alan Pugh

          There are three empty houses for every homeless person in this country. Why would I want to displace anyone from their homes when it would be completely unnecessary? That’s silly.

          • Pablo Jones

            Why would you? Probably because you feel that those if the big fancy homes bought them with money they earned exploiting others. You feel it isn’t fair that they have more than others and things should be made fair and even.

          • Alan Pugh

            Not at all. Some people create more value than others. You and I may disagree on which people those are, but we don’t disagree on the overall theory.

  • onesears

    …they had there chance… darn it.

  • Carrie Watson

    You guys are pretty heartless to say things like that. There are families that live in Wilkes Villa, including families with young children. Wilkes has gotten a bad reputation over the years, and I’m sure there’s a reason for it, but I bet that the majority of the people living there are good people who just can’t afford better housing in a better neighborhood.

    • Pablo Jones

      I’d bet the majority of the people living in Wilkes would disagree with you about the majority of the people being good.

      I’d bet that if you drug tested every person that lives there above the age of 10 the majority would test positive for drug use.

      • Alan Pugh

        I thought you were a libertarian. Am I mistaken? A libertarian wouldn’t be suggesting drug testing, and a libertarian would know that using substances in the privacy of one’s own home (be it alcohol, tobacco, cannabis, or even meth) is no business of others.

        • golfingirl

          Drugs is what has caused many of these people to be living there in the first place. I would speculate drugs have impacted nearly every person in that housing development in a negative way.

          A compassionate person would look for ways to help them get off drugs, not turn your back on drug use because it is taking place behind closed doors.

          A meth addict usually cannot work, therefore has no income, so where does the money come from to pay for the addiction? Unless they can print money in their meth lab, they are likely stealing to pay for their habit.

          If you think for a minute that drug use stays in the “privacy of one’s own home” and is a victimless crime, you are so wrong.

          • Alan Pugh

            I was asking Pablo a question about his views, thanks.

          • golfingirl

            My apologies. I should have posted not as a reply, but as a separate post, but still directed to you.

            Regardless, simply answer the question. Do you truly feel drug use is a victim less crime and its impact will stay behind the doors of the addicts if we allow them to use legally in their homes? Will it have absolutely no impact on others in society? Will we all be safer because of it?

            Again, I judge compassion by the number of people we can help rid themselves of the addiction, not by the changes in the laws to make it easier and safer to use.

            We do seem to agree however, that less government intrusion in our lives is a positive. This includes less taxation and redistribution of wealth by the government in my definition. This is likely where we differ.

            Equal opportunity for all does not guarantee equal results for all. I believe in the first part, but personal responsibility and accountability plays into the second part, and you, nor I, can control this. But in your mind, we should just “take care” of these people and pay for their poor decisions, lack of motivation and frankly, their laziness in many cases. How does this motivate anyone to improve their lives?

            You reap what you sow. This is the principle this great country was founded on.

            This is why early farmers worked hard in their fields. They realized without hard work, their families would starve come winter. If they had any extra left over at harvest, they sold, traded or helped others with their surplus. In your mind, they should have just been forced by a government to give away 50% of their crop, and their labor, to others who choose not to work. Sacrificing their own families survival to help those not less fortunate, but less ambitious.

            How is this fair and how does it promote hard work, personal sacrifice and accountability for anyone? It promotes a free-ride, which is what I am sick and tired of.

          • Karen Machnicki

            first off to all of you ignorant people who say everyone in wilkes does drugs don’t judge who you dont know i am a mother of 4 been with my kids father for 22 years we lost our home to a forclosure had to surrender our vehicle all because we both lost our $15.00 an hour jobs at the same company none of us do drugs nor drink alcohol as for work my husband has 2o years experience in drywalling and we both have about 5 years experience in fire and water restoration you know any one hiring so before you label people by where they live educate yourself

          • Pablo Jones

            That is why I said the majority. Do you disagree? Are you saying more than half the people don’t do drugs? If so I don’t think you know many of the people living there.

          • Karen Machnicki

            i could not tell you what people do here we have kept to ourselves since we moved in but i dont judge who i dont know so i cant answer that question

          • bdid.d

            Do you lock your doors at night?…. Then .. you do judge…

          • Karen Machnicki

            i dont judge people i lock my doors for safety do you lock yours

          • bdid.d

            I sure do! I also call a spade a spade… it’s not judgemental it’s smart! Who are you afraid of in your neighborhood full of good people that you choose not to judge?

          • golfingirl

            Would you agree that drugs have impacted NEARLY every person in that housing development in a negative way?

            Would it be a better place without the drugs and violence for you and your family?

            Do you think that may be why people feel the way they do about that housing project? The long history of what has occurred there unfortunately does lend itself to stereotyping. My apologies to you if you do not fit the typical resident profile.

            I know there are good people living everywhere. Given your desire to work, I am sure it will be a temporary situation.

            This is also where the immigration debate comes in as well. We recently built a new house and not a single person on the drywall crew could speak English. Same for the masons and flooring guys.

            It was very frustrating to have to deal with this, as when you saw they were doing something wrong, you could not communicate with them at all. They just smiled and kept working, until their boss came along who was bilingual.

            They have taken away American jobs, driven down wages and put a lot of Americans out of work. The general contractors use this “cheap” labor to increase their profits.

          • Karen Machnicki

            i would agree this world would be a better place without drugs as for here i would not know what people do because we choose to keep to ourselves have since we moved in

          • Chris

            1st mistake, too many children could have stopped any time before 4. 2nd mistake, living beyond your means. 3rd mistake, you had no back up plan. I could go on. Your lack of personal responsibility is why your in that situation. I’ve work seasonally all my life, and still held down the fort, raised my children and never took a dime of tax payer subsidy. All prudent planning and saving money for the rainy day. Something too many Americans don’t do without a second thought, and then cry woe is me because of it.

        • Pablo Jones

          You are mistaken. I’ve talked to several libertarians while in college when they asked me to sign petitions for some candidate for some office. I’d ask why should I vote for them? They would give me their little elevator pitch “X supports the 10 tenets of liberalism…” I’d ask and what are they? Their responses usually went like this. “Smaller government, less taxes, (start the stoner laugh) legalizing drugs, I really don’t know what the rest are.”

          Besides that isn’t “their home” it’s the tax payers home.

      • Karen Machnicki

        first off to all of you ignorant people who say everyone in wilkes does drugs don’t judge who you dont know i am a mother of 4 been with my kids father for 22 years we lost our home to a forclosure had to surrender our vehicle all because we both lost our $15.00 an hour jobs at the same company none of us do drugs nor drink alcohol as for work my husband has 2o years experience in drywalling and we both have about 5 years experience in fire and water restoration you know any one hiring so before you label people by where they live educate yourself

        • Pablo Jones

          Never put all your eggs in one basket. What is keeping you and your husband from going out and getting another job? They are out there, they may not be the job you want or pay what you want but there are jobs out there.

          • Karen Machnicki

            which part of we had to surrender our vehicle did you not hear it does take one to look for a job and my husband is trying to find one online he has a bunch of apps in no one has called and i am home schooling 2 of my children because of adhd and we do not no anyone else here we cant ask for a ride because we chose to keep to our self
            so what do you suggest we do since you seem to think you know everything

          • Pablo Jones

            They don’t take a car or a house from missing one payment, usually takes multiple months. How many jobs did you guys not apply to or accept because it wasn’t what you wanted or what you wanted to make.

          • Karen Machnicki

            none we took every job that was offered have you ever lost a job and found one the next day no when your have bills 800 dollar mortage and 500 dollar car payment plus household needs and 4 kids needing clothes because they out grow them and food to feed a family of 6 no you havent so dont act like you know me or what my family has been through

          • John Davidson

            Sounds like you outlived your income. Should have put some cash away for at least six months emergency funds. Hope you both find work soon and get out of the deplorable conditions you are living in.

          • Pablo Jones

            Yes I’ve lost my jobs twice once longer than 6 months and have higher bills than that. And there were times when I couldn’t pay my bills. And after a couple months I still didn’t lose my house. I worked things out with the bank and still have my house and cars.

          • bdid.d

            Maybe … don’t have so many kids… just a thought.

          • bdid.d

            Maybe study grammar and spelling, punctuation if you have the time… AND maybe , work any job offered to you. If you are home schooling your children, you obviously have an internet connection. That is a good source for jobs… what else have you been ” without” ?

          • LugNutt

            I hope she will educate us on her struggle!

          • Karen Machnicki

            first off their school provides the computer and internet the bill goes straight to them its called ecot look it up as for my grammer worry about your own spelling

          • bdid.d

            Please … point out my errors!! … If you are using this “free” internet connection to comment on a news story, you could be looking for jobs with it… no?

          • LugNutt

            Are they aware of what you are using this connection for? It’s called milking the system, look it up! Hope you aren’t the one doing the teaching! P.S. I think you meant grammar. Please just go away quietly now!

          • golfingirl

            Herein lies the problem:

            The “school provides the computer and internet.”

            Not quite, the taxpayers provide the computer and internet. Nothing is free, if you are not paying for it, someone else is. In this case, it is myself, and others like me.

            Below is a recent summary of ECOT. Makes Elyria Public School System look like an Ivy League Institution.

            From December 2013:

            “The Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow (ECOT) is the largest charter school in the state of Ohio. The online school is larger than the vast majority of Ohio’s traditional school districts and received over $88 million in state funding last school year. This year that amount is expected to jump to over $92 million.”

            “On the latest report cards released by the Ohio Department of Education, ECOT continues to rank below all of the 8 large urban schools that are often-criticized by legislators and in the media for their “sub-par” performance.”

            “ECOT’s Performance Index Score of 68.1 earned them an F grade in that category while the urban districts all received C’s and D’s.”

            “For graduation rate, a key indicator for the long-term success of a school/district, ECOT’s 5-year graduation rate of 37.8% was over 25 points worse than the lowest urban, Cleveland, who checked in at 63.3%.”

            Another waste of taxpayer dollars!!!!!!

        • LugNutt

          Keep repeating yourself. It definitely makes you sound more intelligent!

      • Kelvin Gray

        Are we assuming again? I thought that maybe you SHOULD HAVE been better than that. I personally don’t know how many people would pass or fail a drug test that live there. And I personally don’t care. What I’m tripping on it is how does that have anything to do with this story again?

      • Chris

        At least 1/3 of our whole population would test positive for illegal substances. The other 2/3-1% would test positive for pharma of some sort including over the counter. Drugs are everywhere you look.

    • bdid.d

      You should go down there and offer them a place to stay…

    • Simon Jester

      You poor, deluded fool.

    • John Davidson

      As far as families go, I would be willing to bet that most of the kids there don’t even know who their father is.

      • Karen Machnicki

        first off to all of you ignorant people who say everyone in wilkes does drugs don’t judge who you dont know i am a mother of 4 been with my kids father for 22 years we lost our home to a forclosure had to surrender our vehicle all because we both lost our $15.00 an hour jobs at the same company none of us do drugs nor drink alcohol as for work my husband has 2o years experience in drywalling and we both have about 5 years experience in fire and water restoration you know any one hiring so before you label people by where they live educate yourself ok

        • golfingirl

          I think we got your point the first two times you posted it….. Good luck to your family and hopefully you can see beyond drywall as a career.

          • Karen Machnicki

            first there you go again thinking you know us he is looking for work in what ever is avalible ty

          • golfingirl

            Good Luck. I really do wish you well.

    • Chris

      I grew up out there in the late 70′s and 80′s. Only by shear determination was I able to get out. South Park and Wilkes have always been the same blight they are today.This was our governments idea to end poverty. Only those who truly want to break the chain of poverty will. The rest will just take all the freebies and then consume those around them. It feeds on itself. My advice is to avoid getting involved with our gov’t if you can. That is what they will do to you. They really don’t care about you. Just your vote.

  • Michael

    the police dept saying there was no danger of a possible explosion causes me concern. If the fire dept said that I’d be a bit more comfortable with it, as it’s their job to know. The cops? Hope the fire dept told them that answer, because if the cops decided that, I’d be in great fear. Not trying to be disrespectful, but gas, fire, explosions? That’s not in their education jurisdiction.