If I'm having to pay additional taxes for a longer period of time, that's new taxes. Now comes the newest chum from OKC officials. "Chum" is defined by Webster's as "chopped fish or other matter thrown overboard to attract fish."
Our leaders in the past couple of months have proposed (chummed) all sorts of projects hoping to get a "yes" vote from someone. Their biggest hope is that the citizens of Oklahoma City don't care enough to go to the polls to vote "no" and stop this insane tax feeding frenzy that they've hooked us on, and now in desperate economic times.
And who rakes in the biggest benefits from our tax dollars? Corporate downtown. Look at what all the previous MAPS have provided for residents traveling in/through downtown. Now, we are moving from a "Big League City" (at a cost of $121 million) to a "World-Class Park," which is supposed to attract private investments?
Is this the best alternative to the new wide open spaces once I-40 is relocated? What about the maintenance?
Hopefully, OKC has a better plan with rail transit than the few buses and trolleys that have routes and schedules that accommodate only a handful of riders with vehicles that are not adequately maintained. Rail transit will require a complex, comprehensive long-term plan, maintenance, facilities, crews and extra equipment to facilitate this undertaking.
"Chum" sidewalks: OKC paid an out-of-state consultant to tell the city it needs better sidewalks? What are we paying city engineers for? Does it really take an engineer to decide that if you draw pedestrian traffic into a centralized area they might need sidewalks to get around? It's simple: The city would have to have additional sidewalks because of their lack of transit.
"Chum" State Fair improvements means more "horse" improvements. For those of us who have attended the fair for more than 50 years, the allure and meaning of a true State Fair have been taken over by the smell of horse"(money).
"Chum" trails: Oklahoma River improvements and health and wellness aquatic centers for seniors all require a city (our taxes) to maintain from day one. Where do these maintenance funds come from? More taxes!
One could take each proposal and wonder who could propose such recommendations? OKC can't take care of what we have now. How in the world can these officials make us believe that all these "chumming" ideas will make us a World-Class City? It will most definitely make us a city with World-Class Taxes. Please vote "no." We're tired of MAPS!
"J. Dougherty, Oklahoma City