Saturday, March 05, 2005

Letter: Land bridge is waste of precious funds

The Commercial Appeal
Letter to the Editor

This week the League of Women Voters hosted a meeting about the proposed land bridge that is a big part of the Riverfront Development Corp.'s master plan for Downtown's waterfront. RDC president Benny Lendermon and Virginia McLean, of Friends for Our Riverfront, were guests.

No matter how you view the proposed changes and their impact on our city, we all must agree that our first priority must be fiscal responsibility. As the numbers began to come out, grudgingly on the part of Lendermon, it became clear we are talking hundreds of millions more than this city has ever put into any public works project.

In a time of severe budget crisis, when our mayor considers cutting $86 million from the city schools, do we need to spend $100 million on the RDC to develop plans for spending hundreds of millions more? Where are our priorities? Should we invest in our people, our poverty, our crime, our education, our homelessness and our police forces? Probably, but for some reason, our elected officials are more interested in creating estate homes on the harbor and turning our Public Promenade into high-priced condos.

We are robbed each time we get our property tax bills. It's time for us to get rid of every politician who votes for funding anything until our children have a decent education. They are our future, not a land bridge that lines the pockets of some of the wealthiest players in the game.

Jeffrey Chipman

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