Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Landmark votes for Hailey

Hailey voters have another opportunity on Tuesday to continue moving this dynamic community forward in the 21st century by casting ballots on two important city issues.

We wholeheartedly recommend a "Yes" vote for a Local Option Tax that would fund badly needed services for the fast-growing community with an estimated 90 percent of the new tax to be paid by visitors and tourists.

An estimated $326,250 in revenues the first year would come from a 3% tax on car rentals and hotel rooms, 1% on restaurants and 2% on liquor-by-the-drink. The money would be invested in emergency services, parks, roads, the library, sidewalks, public transit, and city promotion.

Big challenges face Hailey. In due course, Friedman Memorial Airport will be closed and relocated, creating new urban development challenges. Option tax revenues will help the city remain ahead of demands on resources.

On the other ballot question, whether to create a city manager form of government, we just as heartily recommend Hailey voters cast a resounding "No" ballot.

This issue is a sour-grapes campaign engineered by mischievous gadfly former Mayor Al Lindley, who resigned in 2002, was refused his seat when he changed his mind, and then lost when he ran against incumbent Mayor Susan McBryant.

Lindley's monkey wrench scheme to change government wouldn't improve Hailey City Hall operations one iota.

The old aphorism is true: If it ain't broke, why "fix" it?

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