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Stop the Madness

Editor, News-Register:

PLEASE — STOP THE MADNESS !

NO ONE in their right mind, by any stretch of the imagination, would spend $534,000 for property that is worth only $61,000.

Would you personally pay $534,000 for a new 2018 Ford F-150 Super Crew Cab Truck with a list price of $61,645; I don’t think so. Would you personally pay $534,000 for a 2019 Buick Enclave (all-wheel drive) with a list price of $61,625; I don’t think so. So why in the world would the taxpayers of the City of Wheeling want to pay $534,000 for property that is only worth $61,000.

Stop squandering taxpayers’ money. It’s been done before, please don’t do it again. For example, former Keg and Kraut purchased from the city for $1; two buildings on Main Street which the city bought for $200,000 of taxpayers’ money and then sold for $2, a LOSS of $199,998; city taxpayers spent $295,000 to acquire four buildings at 1425, 1429, 1433, and 1437 Market Street, but “Thalman said selling them to a viable developer at a cost of $1 each would be prudent.” What is “prudent” about losing $294,996 of taxpayers’ money? It might be more prudent, and certainly better for some citizens, if you just stood at a downtown intersection and threw handfuls of cash into the air.

All too often, city officials spend money and don’t give any thought to the effect that expenditure will have on the taxpayers (for example, user fee for the public safety building). A “user fee” (really a “user TAX”) for anyone working in the city of Wheeling really amounts to the city officials arbitrarily changing everyone’s salary by reducing every employees’ paycheck. Taking their money without their approval (vote) is akin to taxation without representation; no one on council represents these people because many of the people who work in Wheeling do not live in Wheeling. (I believe the Revolutionary War dealt with this issue.) Also, self-employed people and business owners who are affected by this “user fee/tax” will just pass the expense on to the consumers.

In this respect, the taxpayers in the city of Wheeling will be charged TWICE. Any decisions regarding a public safety building should be carefully determined, and then put before the voters at the next election.

Acting on a public safety building in haste only means that the taxpayers will repent at leisure. Stop spending taxpayer money just so that you (city officials) can have your names in bronze on a plaque on a new building.

One last comment before I close: Remember that the employees who work in the City-County Building rely on the fact that if they have a disruptive or threatening customer and have to hit the “panic” button in their offices that a policeman will be there to help them within seconds/a minute.

So, please think long and hard about a public safety building, remember the city employees who count on the speedy response time of law enforcement personnel when a problem exists, ask the people who voted you into office how they feel about spending $534,000 for a $61,000 building that is just going to be torn down, and remember your constituents who deserve a vote about the public safety building at the next election.

Barb Romick

Wheeling

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