Thursday, February 16, 2012

CCR 02-16-12: Dear Addict

the Controversial Committee Report

“We don’t raise sacred cows...we just butcher them.”

Letter mailed to: 825 W. Irving Blvd, Irving, TX, 75060, w/encl.

February 16, 2012

Dear Irving Council Members:

Rick Stopfer, Rose Cannaday, Michael Gallaway, Roy Santoscoy, Lewis Patrick, Dennis Webb

It has become painfully clear that your position and voting for the ill funded $250 million Entertainment Center is not going to be based on facts, protection of property tax payers or consideration for the financial future of the city. Otherwise, how could you not see, recognize or heed all of the demonstrably negative aspects and numbers related to this venture? How can you honestly defend the rationale for:

    • LCG having a 100-year lease for the EC venue.
    • LCG only paying the city $1 million/year with no escalation clause for rental increases for 50 years.
    • The city’s paid bond and financial consultants having stated that a $170 million bond package is very risky. The city administration has also agreed with this assessment.
    • HOT taxes being double pledged, thereby jeopardizing ICVB and Arts Center budgets.
    • Property tax payers already bailing out the Convention Center for several million dollars in debt service payments for their first year. And it is expected that this will be the case for at least five more years. LCG is not liable for any bonded debt the city would incur on the EC.
    • LCG has yet to submit the required documentation that demonstrates their $80 million share of the project is actually available.
    • LCG revenue projections that are significantly optimistic and verge on being pure fantasy.
    • The city’s AAA bond rating being compromised if ‘investment grade’ bonds are not issued.
    • Many other contractual factors in the agreement favoring LCG over the city’s and citizen’s interests.

Knowing that this letter -- much like all the citizens who have appeared before you -- will not change your opinion, the staff of the CCR will take the high road of this debate in consideration of your medicalization needs.

If during a future council session -- when the bonded debt will be voted on -- discussions venture into the early morning hours while you ponder how much to raise property taxes to fund Billy Bob’s Boondoggle, the enclosed packet of Kool-Aid should help you weather the physical cramps, shakes and twitches of your addiction. And be assured, our sympathy for addicts is only matched by our compassion to assist them when they require their daily fix.

After all, it wouldn’t be appropriate for ex-mayor Gears, Billy Bob, Charles Cotton, chamber of commerce members, ICVB board members, et al to be seen delivering your daily dose of Kool-Aid while you sit in council chambers anxiously waiting to press your ‘FOR’ button to strap tax paying citizens with the single most massive debt service burden in its history...a $250 million Entertainment Center.

Kindest personal regards,

Mark Holbrook

P.S. The staff of the CCR hopes Grape is one of your favorite Kool-Aid flavors.