Wednesday, May 30, 2007

City: Stay out of hotel business

I read the two articles in the May 9 Mountain Express entitled "Massing study shows hotel concepts" and "City prioritizes hotel qualifications" and the editorial entitled "Think before you howl."

It comes to mind that there is no need for a massing study. Consequently, there is no need for a consultant. Of course, Ketchum Mayor Randy Hall and the City Council love to hire consultants with the taxpayers' money. After all, they can raise taxes whenever they want.

It is not the business of Mayor Randy Hall and the City Council to allow or deny the building of a hotel based upon their whims. If the design meets the ordinances, then they should allow the building. If the design does not meet the ordinances, then they should not allow it. What I see is a bunch of excuses and favoritism made up by the city to allow or deny a hotel.

It is not the business of the city to solicit the building of a hotel. It is not the business of the city to say that they cannot compete with the Sun Valley Co. without a hotel and at the same time give tens of thousands of dollars to the Chamber and Visitors Bureau to help advertise the Sun Valley Co.

How did a hotel plan for the Simplot property appear? There was no mention of that when representative Dick Fenton and Mr. Simplot talked the city into giving them millions of dollars worth of land. I remember that there was talk of nice open space and offering to sell the city a lot for millions of dollars in exchange for the city's giving them millions of dollars worth of land. What a joke!

Why is the city considering closing First Street? After all, they put a stoplight there because of the volume of traffic. There is absolutely no reason to close it, except for another one of their whims. It receives a lot of use and relieves congestion at the center of town.

Why did the city ruin the Light Industrial zone because some developers wanted to increase the value of their land by putting living units there? Of course, the city fathers and mothers believe that it is great for kids to play in the safety of the car wash and the lumberyards and the welding shops.

Jake Jacoby


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