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'Some things I know for sure'

Posted: January 25, 2012 4:27 p.m.
Updated: January 27, 2012 5:00 a.m.

Over 1,000 Camden residents signed the recent petition asking the City to stop this Y project and let the people be involved in the decision that would obligate our Hospitality Tax dollars for the next 20 years.

This was the third petition that was brought before the council.

Nevertheless, the City continued to spend our tax dollars, and proceed with plans for construction, as if we simply had no say in the matter.

In order to stop them, my husband and I, with a number of contributors, banded together on the Camden Committee for Responsible Government to hire an attorney and file a lawsuit.

The lawsuit asks the courts to decide whether or not the City can legally use the Hospitality Tax dollars to build a “sports complex /YMCA”.

If the court decides “no”, then the City cannot use those particular funds to build the Y.

If the court decides “yes”, then they can. But they shouldn’t.

Over 1,000 of us have signed the petitions, many have signed three times now, asking the City to stop this.

Many of us have asked the City to meet and try to find a compromise solution. The City has not been receptive.

Now, we have been accused by the mayor and council members of trying to divide the community.

It looks to me that the community is pretty well united.

The more than 1,000 of us who signed the petition and filed this lawsuit are all on the same side: We ask the City to stop this, and listen to us.

For the City to complain now about the legal fees is misleading.

If they had been willing to stop the Y project long enough to listen to the 1,000 residents who were repeatedly trying to get their attention, there would be no legal fees. There would have been no need for the petition; there would have been no need for the lawsuit.

As it stands right now, the legal fees that have been spent have come out of the personal pockets of Camden residents who have been forced to band together and spend our own money to go to the courts in order to stop the City from riding roughshod over the residents.

We have done this because we care passionately about Camden.

We do not want our Hospitality Tax dollars to be squandered; we want to see them invested for the economic growth of Camden, as they are intended to be used.

Camden needs to build tourism, in order to bring paying customers to local business, which in turn will create jobs.

The City should be concerning itself with that, and not a 6.5 million dollar YMCA.

The proposed Y would use up almost all of our Hospitality Tax dollars for the next 20 years, leaving little with which to build our tourism industry and create more jobs.

That is why we brought the lawsuit.

We want to see the Hospitality Tax dollars used to build the economy of Camden. That is what we need right now.

And I know that for sure.

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