Archive for Wednesday, December 13, 2000

Discussing city issues is a must

December 13, 2000

Citizens of Baldwin. With Christmas fast approaching, and cold weather settling in with a vengence most of us are either looking forward to the yuletide holiday or a fun filled New Year's party. But wait, the city of council of Baldwin has delivered us a present. Can you guess what the little stocking stuffer is this year? A rebate check for the electrical price gouging fiasco of August 1999? Decent water pressure? A sewer plant that does not spill into Tauy Creek? Public debate of important land purchases and improvements for the city? Oh my nothing that mundane or realistic. As we peek into our stockings hung from the mantle with care, we see, oh yes an electrical rate increase!! Just what we all wanted. Anyone else getting fed up with the pounding our wallets are taking?

I read the article in last weeks paper with interest as to the events of the city council meeting of Dec. 4. I am sorely disappointed that I missed the discussion on electrical rates, and the issue of generation of power. I do not claim to have the answers on this issue. I'm not even sure I have all the questions, but we do need some discussion on this issue. Why is it that no public discussion takes place on these issues? I do not understand the elected officials of this city's approach to issues at all. And quite frankly their handling of the public and its input is a public relations

nightmare.

On to other topics, I would like to take this opportunity to thank Mr. Paine for his article last week on tax abatements. For the first time we agreed on all points. Yes, tax abatements are an effective tool for attracting business. Yes, the paperwork involved with them is lengthy. Yes, they should not be handed out like candy at a parade. And, yes, the current city council is a "serious NO" to the idea, the thought, or mere mention of the dreaded words "tax abatement." I found it interesting that we want to build this big park

for all these businesses on the southwest edge of town, but react so negatively to the instruments that will attract potential clients to an industrial park. I am afraid that the scenic view of Faulkner's pond and the other isolated attractions of this site will not fool serious minded business personel into coming to Baldwin.

In conclusion, I would like to thank the paper for giving me the column space to be the "opposing view" on this business/recreational park issue. Unfortunately, I will probably be demoted to the letter of the editor column due to a lack of editorial participation on the side of the park proponents. Of course the only proponents I have found are the five members of the current city council and our mayor. Now let's remember, myself and other

volunteers are working their way around Baldwin with a petition dealing with the park project. If you want to sign and we haven't found you yet, call 594-3431 or stop by 409 11th street. Have a Happy Holiday.

Ken Hayes,

"Hopeful city council member"

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