Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Ballot Question Gets A Revision - Proposed Community Center

Last night at the council meeting the proposed new community center was on the agenda.

The concept of leaving the decision to the voters is good, but, the original question that was proposed to be on the ballot was extremely deceptive.  The original question indicated that the project would cost $38 million and be covered by a bond issue. 

What was disconcerting about the original wording was that it did not say where the money was coming from.  A last minute change to the wording indicated that it would come from a mill levy increase.  That is a more honest approach.

The people of Shawnee need to know the good, the bad and the ugly about this project.

They need to know that if it passes:
1.  There will be a mill levy increase
2.  It is not a free use facility, fees to use it will be charged (on top of the mill levy increase)
3.  It will not be self sufficient as far as continuing operations.  The cost of running the facility will be in the negative in excess of $200K a year.  that money will come from the general fund and take away from needed services.

Sidebar:  The gentleman Eric Danielson who spoke as the representative for a citizen's involvement group could have been more forthcoming.  Even though he is a Shawnee resident, I feel that he should have mentioned that he is an employee of J E Dunn who has an interest in this project.  As a citizen of Shawnee he has every right to speak on this item.  But, being employed by a company with a stake in the project should have been mentioned.