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To The Editor,
I am writing in strong in opposition to The Commons Master Plan, specifically the plan to dedicate taxpayer dollars to the redevelopment of the Lincoln County Fairgrounds. While I recognize the need to update the existing facility and support efforts to bolster the 4-H activities County Fair and other traditional, community supported activities and events hosted at the site, the size, scope and extensive redevelopment plan is simply out of scale and out of touch with the needs of residents of Lincoln County.
When all consultant reports and readily available local data assure that the planned conference and expanded events facility will never pay for itself at any level of occupancy, to continue to pursue this project is an irresponsible and indefensible action.
This redevelopment plan is an egregious waste of tax dollars that could, and should, be used address critical Lincoln County projects that are far more important to the local population such as, but certainly not limited to, affordable workforce housing, updates to aging infrastructure, public and mental health services, all of which are in crisis.
Additionally, I strongly object to the lack of transparency in the planning process, and the Fair Board’s demonstrated lack of respect for and inclusion of public comment and concern. I urge you in no uncertain terms to add another meeting in Newport – the community that will bear the brunt of this decision- and take definitive steps to ensure that the public is informed of the time, date and location by every means and method available to you, and to welcome with interest the comments and concerns of the taxpayers you are sworn to represent.
135 SW Brook Street
Newport, OR. 97365