The City's Dilemma
As we have been discussing recently, we feel strongly that the natatorium, planned for the Scribner Place development, should be postponed for a minimum of 2 years while all efforts and possible resources are directed towards meeting EPA directives, including the part that says we MUST spend at least $500K per year, every year, on inner-city repairs and upgrades.
New Albany is currently under a Federal mandate to comply with Federal laws, and we are concerned about the devestating economic impact of the restricted sewer credits that resulted from not meeting those mandates in a timely manner.
These impacts not only affect New albany, but are reaching beyond our City limits and impacting Georgetown and their neighbors, Lanesville as was reported here in today's Courier Journal.
Owing to the fact that we are under NO Federal mandate to build swimming pools, we feel the $400K in EDIT dollars that would be stripped from the City by a natatorium would be better utilized, at this point in time, to pay for these Federal directives.
It is looking more and more like our pleas for common sense to prevail have been heard, and Monday's Council Meeting will hopefully tell for sure.
We recieved copies of the "financials" concerning Stormwater, Drainage, and Sewage that were handed out at the last Council meeting, by Sewer Board attorney Greg Fifer, and we have to say they are pretty difficult to take seriously.
I mean, if the State recommends a full investigation into the financials because they can't make heads nor tails of them, then perhaps we should pay attention.
Obviously, there are Council Members who are having a hard time swallowing these numbers as well. We congratulate, and thank them, for their resolve to get to the bottom of these matters.
The Sewer rate increase that has been recently proposed, along with new rates for Stormwater "use", and the need for money to pay Drainage, along with all the "loans" that are due back to the sewer fund, are being wrongly assessed to the citizens.
We are looking to our Council Representatives to set right this unfair burden on the ratepayers due to failures to adequately and efficiently represent the best interests of the City, and all its residents.
The City must indeed move forward. However, it must be able to do so on solid footing with the proper infrastructure in place before we start pouring vital funds into "luxury" amenities.