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Playing GODD again?

Posted: July 15, 2011 10:03 a.m.
Updated: July 18, 2011 5:00 a.m.

Another “done deal”? Is this where we are headed again? I certainly hope not. This YMCA “deal” is another prime example of the “Government of the Done Deal” – GODD! Our city leaders are playing GODD once again. What has happened to a government of the people, by the people, for the people?

Let’s look at some simple facts.

1)     The City of Camden has purchased, at a hefty premium, a piece of land that has been on the market, and vacant for quite some time.

2)     The mayor and his family have made profits off of this sale of land. (Conflict of interest?)

3)     The mayor said, on WIS-TV news in the days afterward, that no plan was afoot for the land; it was just a “good buy.”

4)     Shortly afterward, the plans were public for the YMCA “deal.”

Are we, the taxpayers, being played as fools again? I say yes! Let’s look further.

1)     The funds for this project have come from the hospitality tax collected from hotels and restaurants.

2)     Were there public hearings prior to this regarding the use of these funds? No way!

3)     Will the YMCA, if it is built and if it lives up to all of the “powers” projections, fill any hotel rooms? Will it bring tourists or other folks to Camden to spend their money in our restaurants? I again hardly doubt that this would happen.

A look at other “done deals” would show failure again and again. How about the Beechwood Plantation project where they wanted to overbuild a pristine Camden property with patio homes for retired folks? If this had gone through, would these people be the ones we are looking for to pay $55 per month for the YMCA? I doubt it. Let’s look at the “horse estate” development on Springdale Drive. Are all of those empty lots and dreams going to support the YMCA? No way! Where is the planning of this place we all call home going? The equestrian community sells more hotel rooms and pays for more restaurant dinners in this city than any others. Why aren’t the dollars going to preserve and improve our equestrian heritage that Ms. Scott and others started years ago? Why aren’t dollars being spent on the historical venues in Camden? More people come here for historical reasons or equestrians events than will come for a good sweat at the YMCA!

Let’s all get involved! It takes strong-willed people to survive. We are in a battle at all levels of government, and we need to get involved, now! Mr. Mayor and members of the council, let’s get real. Mr. Mayor, all proceeds of the sale of that property should be donated to the humane society immediately. There was definitely a conflict of interest in this sale. And to all members of the council and the mayor, let’s stop playing “GODD” and get back to what made this country great to begin with -- many people with great ideas and great ambitions, working hard for a common good.

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