Friday, October 7, 2011

The Event Center David and Goliath

I guess Build It Now can rest easy. The opposition has finally showed up and they have someone to target, The Citizens Network Against the Event Center.  It's like David and Goliath and Build It Now wants everyone to know they are Goliath and have all the answers.  Just trust me, says Goliath. I am here to save you from what you think you may know about the Event Center.

This group and the mayor have been asking for months - who and where is the opposition. We need someone to fight in order to make our case that our idea is the only right idea to move the event center vision forward.

Some money from big corporations trying to sell the kool-aid  of city hall. The question is whether their money is really invested in a vision that is in the best interests of all the taxpayers of Sioux Falls or whether their money is invested for personal gain and corporation interest.

I support the position of "David," the group no matter how little, who sees the flaws in this plan for ordinary taxpayers:
  • Ill conceived concepts of fiscal prosperity and promises of private funding that will save the taxpayer from having to subsidizing ongoing operating costs for decades and decades.
  • A debt that will saddle the workhorse second penny sales tax for 22 years.
  • The false promise of jobs creation when in fact the majority of jobs created at construction are just temporary jobs and permanent jobs are around 180 not 1500.
  • The ill-conceived parking plan that will be a nightmare with the occurrence of simultaneous events at the proposed venue.
  • The promise that current plans for streets, parks and other projects remain intact and no planned projects have been eliminated to pay for the Event Center but doesn't take into account that necessary infrastructure projects will surely be impacted in future capital program needs.
  • The promise that the financing plan to build it or operate it won't use property tax revenues and the 1st penny sales tax revenues but doesn't say never.
  • That the projection of $1.1 million to $2.5 million per year in positive revenue from event center activities and events will be generated for operating expenses.
  • That using the Entertainment Tax revenues as a contingency to cover operating expenses won't impact negatively on the needs of the Washington Pavilion, Orpheum and the Great Plains Zoo and Delbridge Museum.
  • A projection of $36 million in new economic impact per year when there is talk of a recession next year and the economic climate is a slowdown that could last for another decade.
  • A promise of bigger events, more events and more simultaneous events when consumer confidence and spending is at an all time low.
The "David" in this battle sees that the time is not right and the promises don't add up.


  1. I had to smile at your comments about David and Goliath.....

    I co-chaired the petition drive for the Drake Springs pool....

    and, as we, along many wonderful volunteers, were collecting signatures to drive it to a community vote.......

    we used to talk a lot about David and Goliath!!


    AND, a word about the EC opposition.....

    many of us have been quietly working behind the scenes for months to help educate voters on this important issue for our community.

    For 13 months, I attended the 2009 Task Force meetings, and I attend City Council meetings on a weekly basis.

    I am interested in all issues that my community faces, but I wanted to work extra hard to understand the facts about the events center. I did this so that once I personally made a decision on whether to support it or to oppose it, I would be in a position to go out and begin to talk to other voters.

    The 2009 Task Force struggled with two major issues..............

    who will be the tenants.........

    and how will it be funded.

    I guess it is no surprise that these issues are still the two most controversial topics to this day!!

    I do not believe that either issue has been resolved............

    and, therefore, on November 8th I will cast a "NO" vote.

  2. I am looking forward to the promised review of the financing plan in the 10/9/2011 Argus Leader. The potential costs of bonding scare me as necessary changes to banking and health care will have an unknown effect on our economic base.

    I see the potential for a new version of Sanford & Sons becoming a reality in SIoux Falls; Kelby and Dana try to salvage the junk in T Denny's worldview.