As you are well aware, the City of Cincinnati is financially strapped. The last number I heard, and it is a moving target, is there is a 22 million dollar budget deficit that needs to be addressed in order to provide a structurally balanced budget by the beginning of July, 2014. That being said, the City Council needs to be fiscally responsible for every dime it spends, an ensure each expense is in line with austere budgeting times. So, if you as a Mayor or a Council member have to make a decision on how to spend a half of a million dollars, what would your priorities b? Would you consider it prudent to put the money into public safety? Would you think maybe the money could help finance some of the necessary repairs to the infrastructure required as a result of the harsh winter just experienced? I would suspect that if you were the Mayor or a Council Member you could come up with a wide variety of things to spend that money on. How about spending the money on a puppet theater?
I had thought with the new Mayor and Council that the era of irresponsible spending was over. Not so! With all the important and necessary things that need to be considered, how could a puppet theater ever be granted any consideration. What percentage of our citizens will be impacted by putting a puppet theater in Westwood? The politicians seem to think it will attract businesses to Westwood, and area of the City (like most areas) in need of revitalization. The politicians seem to think it will encourage people to take up residence in the vicinity of the puppet theater, increasing our population and tax base. The Politicians think it will bring jobs to the area. I wonder what these politicians are smoking?. So the question is, are any of these expected returns feasible? Would you, as a potential home owner give any consideration to the proximity of a puppet theater to help influence where you want to buy? Would you, as a local business owner, feel encouraged that business in the area will now prosper because there is now a puppet theater? Would you, as a prospective business owner decide to open you business in Westwood because at long last, there is a puppet theater in the vicinity? I suspect the answer to all these questions is no, the puppet theater would have nothing to do with any of this.
I think the politicians missed an opportunity here. The puppet theater is being located in the wrong place. Think how much more likely success for the theater would be if it were located on the Street Car line. The opportunity for all those thousands of visitors to jump onto the Streetcar after leaving the Freedom Center and go directly to the Puppet Theater would be a temptation too great to resist. I wonder who is pulling the strings (pun intended). Who benefits from this? Remember, as a payer of taxes, it is your money. It is up to you to send the message to the local legislatures when you believe bad financial decisions are being made. You can find the phone number and the email address for each council person and the mayor on the City of Cincinnati Web Page at http://www.cincinnati-oh.gov. Tell them what you think.
Those are my thoughts, what are yours?
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