Residents hoping to convince Orange County Chairman Linda Chapin to cast the tie-breaking vote, defeating a $3.3 million extension proposed for Apopka-Vineland Road, will have to rely on the persuasiveness of arguments made before the county commission on Aug. 4.
The residents, who have been fighting the extension north of Silver Star Road for the past year, have been unable to schedule a private meeting with Chapin, who was touring Italy as the commission deadlocked on the issue on June 30. "She absolutely refuses to see anyone," says Linda Bart, who dismisses the extension as an unnecessary expense.
Chapin maintains a policy against meeting with constituents, as well as powerful developers, on pending issues, says county spokesman Ben Hardcastle. Yet, while hesitant about talking with self-interested constituents, Chapin is hardly shy about talking at length about county services, providing apparently interminable voiceovers heard by callers to her office who are left on hold.