As a business person for many years, I understand that when money becomes scarce, you put a complete freeze on all spending, except on items or projects that are absolutely essential. This city has not done this; even in the face of many businesses struggling and many individuals having a hard time paying for their basic living expenses.
The optics are really poor when the city is forging ahead on “extras”; for example, the bike lanes, the mural project and the Cottonwood Market stage. None of these are of immediate necessity and could easily be viewed as spending “play money” at the same time that people are going without food, shelter and other basic needs.
It’s not even a matter of liking or supporting any of these projects; it’s just really poor timing to be “painting” the town when there are people who could be shaking their heads at the apparent irresponsible nature of spending this money now. Even if these funds are grants, or prepaid, or the money has been earmarked for these endeavours, the visuals make it look like this administration and this council doesn’t have its priorities in the right order. We need to support our entire community.
Let’s wait until the whole COVID debacle has settled down and life returns to some semblance of normalcy before we allocate these funds. We can wait a year if that’s what’s required. None of these projects are needed today.