On Nov. 18, the Dispatch reported I voted no on waiving a $250 re-zoning fee requested by a property owner. I voted no because:
In 2006, this property owner requested the city construct a street and provide water/sewer services to this individual's property. The street is now referred to as "The Street to Nowhere" - at a cost to the city of approximately $450,000 for this property owner's portion. The property owner was not agreeable to pay improvement costs - but instead, wanted to deed the city 20 acres. The 2007 estimated market value of the 20 acres is $62,700, recorded on county documents - and only half is buildable.
The city failed to request a written agreement with the property owner relating to transfer of land in lieu of paying $450,000 improvement costs. As of now, the land is still owned by the property owner and has not been deeded to the city, even though the improvement has been completed.
This property owner now wants to re-zone the property to residential and commercial, increasing the property value, which would benefit this individual by obtaining a higher tax write-off, if and when' this property is or will be deeded to the City. The City paying a re-zoning fee was not part of any previous agreement.
Two years ago the city waived this property owner's $450,000 portion of the improvement cost in exchange for 20 acres that will not sell for nearly enough money to offset that huge cost.
This vote was 6-1 in favor of waiving the $250 rezoning fee for the property owner. This was a win for the property owner and a loss for the Brainerd taxpayers.
Things aren't that bleak
As I walked through the Brainerd area today I couldn't help but notice the despair. It was evident everywhere while I wondered aloud how could this happen in America as I strolled by the hundreds of burn barrels, the thousands of people clinging close for heat. They're families close by as the children begged for food, I was distraught at how few of them even had any shoes to wear.
The recently built shanty towns were decorated for the season as the people clung to any hope left in America to pull them through these agonizing times. Many peoples hope had turned to despair as they watched in horror as the capitalists would drive by in their big SUV's and throw out a few crumbs to mock the poor.
The endless soup lines lined the streets of 371, as the multitudes challenged by the cold waited for any glimmer of hope left. They're skinny bodies barely able to hold the rags of clothing they clung to in the chill, hoping the soup would still be a little warm when they're turn came to hold out the government issued bowl in another day of survival.
I noticed that many in the lines had no health care as was evidenced by how sickly they seemed to be. I thought to myself how this community of Brainerd/Baxter could suffer so much. All of the jobs gone now, and all the hope that left with them had left many hoping for change.
This is what I read in the Brainerd Dispatch day in and day out on the pages of Open Forum letters by Democrats. It is sickening, and it just isn't true!
Merry Christmas to the Big 3
I just saw on TV that the auto industry talking heads were all in Washington looking for some spare change. The man questioning them asked for anyone who took a commerical flight to the meeting to raise their hands. Not one hand went up. They all took their private jets. Don't these supposedly smartest of the smartest executives get it? They still want their huge perks and we are supposed to pay for them. They have seen these problems coming for years, it didn't just happen overnight. And these are the smartest people running these dinosaur industries. The auto workers themselves have paid themselves right out of a job - $58 an hour with all their benefits. I work for less than $7.50 an hour. I could work circles around any auto worker. They can't put any car that isn't losing money. Why can Honda do it? Because they don't pay their employees like the Big 3 dinosaurs. Plus, they make a way better car. If the Big 3 have this technology to make non-gas guzzling SUVs, why aren't these cars in production? They have had many years of research and have come up with zero solutions. What is going to be so different with a bailout? I don't think it is going to be as bad as these executives make it out to be. Yes, they will lose jobs, but maybe they should have thought that when their were taking all their big bonuses and flying to Washington on their private jets. I hope they put their big bonuses away for a rainy day because it is here. Merry Christmas Big 3!
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