If you read my prior post, particularly the litany of quotes from C.C. Elebash, it will become very apparent at how fickled his arguments have been:
At one point, he wanted us to build a public library on the site…yet he and others have told us repeatedly how foolish it is to build on the water because of hurricanes. ->Library must be hurricane-proof….Stadium, offices buildings, etc. are not. Huh?
The most important issue for Mr. Elebash in 2005 and 2006 was the removal of the Main St. plant. He predicted that the bond issue for the CMP would prevent it from happening and if the plant was removed that it would take five to seven years. Actually it will take four and the CMP bonds had no impact on ECUA’s decision to move the plant, which opens in July 2010. -> Since the Main St. Plant relocation wasn’t impacted and it will be completed sooner than the CMP, then the City should go ahead with financing the park, right?
The cost of stadium, according to Mr. Elebash, went from $12 million to $16 million to $20 million before the 2006 referendum. The actual amount being paid out of the CRA bond issue for the stadium is $12.7 million. The CMPA will also use an addition $1,275,000 of the New Market Tax Credit funds for the stadium. ->With such wild estimates by Mr. Elebash that were $4-6 million dollars off, how can we rely on his other financial projections?
In 2005, Mr. Elebash told us that there would have to be deletions, changes and delays in the CMP project. Yet now we are told that we should halt the project because of the deletions, changes and delays.-> This is one prediction that Mr. Elebash made that has come true, but he seems upset about it. He understood five years ago the changes were inevitable.
In 2006, Mr. Elebash and Save Our City made the stadium, which even then they wanted to label it as only as “a ballpark,” the focal point of their arguments against the park and called it the “centerpiece.” The referendum passed. ->Now they tell us that none of us ever really wanted the stadium. Wait, you told us the stadium (ballpark) is all the CMP was in 2006 and the referendum passed. Are you telling us that you lied to us and that it was all the other components? One could argue with more validity that the stadium is why the park passed and the other components didn’t matter in 2006.
After Hurricane Katrina, Mr. Elebash said the conference center should be postponed because we could afford it. It has been. ->Why isn’t he happy about it?
At little over a year ago, Mr. Elebash said that reducing CRA bonds for the park by canceling the stadium would improve the chances of receiving federal grants. The City didn’t and is getting $12.1 million in New Market Tax Credits from the federal government ->The total cost of the project that could completed within a year to 18 months is what made that much money available in NMTC. The stadium helped, did not hurt. We’re now getting a better park with a marina and breakwater.
….The heart of the matter is Mr. Elebash never wanted the stadium—since Jan. 2005. Referendum votes, the failure of the re-election bid of Marty Donovan and the doomed 2009 petition drive all show that his position has little popular support…and hasn’t for five years.
Over the years, Mr. Elebash has tried a variety of arguments:
1. Exaggerated the cost of the stadium
2. Claimed an either/or choice between the stadium and relocation of the Main St. Plant
3. Tried to substitute a new library for the stadium
4. Claimed the bond issue hurt availability of federal grants
5. Tried to convince voters of the unpopularity of baseball and the negligible impact of a team on the local economy
None of them worked in 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 or 2010.
It’s time to move on and continually rehashing the same tired arguments doesn’t move this community ahead. Let’s talk about how we want to redevelop the Main Street Sewage Treatment Plant site and the land around it.