Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Gaylord/Prop. 300 Election Update

First, if you spend any amount of time on the Tribune's new website, I am sure you have seen the ads for Prop. 300. I finally clicked one the other day and checked out www.Yeson300.com. There is some pretty cool stuff on there. If you want to learn more about Gaylord, DMB, or their plans for the proving grounds, its a good place to start.

Also, you can tell the election is drawing nearer as both papers start to take a more in-depth interest on the vote. The Tribune recently explored the impact of the current economy on the Gaylord vote. I tend to think that the current economy plays well for this project. Every day, we are reading about people losing their jobs, companies going under and industries in need of a bailout. In the Valley, we have read that Mesa is no longer the only city who needs to make dramatic cuts.

Long story short, the economy is hurting. I think the promise of new revenue for the cash-strapped city along with jobs would be a welcomed opportunity. If the numbers are right, they say that this could bring $5 million or more to the city. I would have to check again, but isn't that about the amount that Fire had to cut from their budget?

Also, lets compare this to the national stimulus package to the vote we are faced with in Mesa right now. The national plan is all taxpayer money, our money, doled out to different things ranging from banks to sex education programs. On the other hand, Prop 300 is bed taxes being used to promote Mesa and attracting a $1 billion in private funds.

If the federal program came along tomorrow and said that the $800+ million would immediately trigger billions more in private investment, guaranteed, I would be more apt to support. Alas it does not, and we have to wonder if we are throwing more good money after bad.

In the case of the Gaylord project, if you don't stay at the hotel, they aren't seeing a dime of your money. And even if you did, that money wouldn't be going to pay some 7 figure bonus to some executive, its going to promote Mesa to the world. More tourism to Mesa means even more money spent in our community.

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