Just a note concerning the results of the election. The people of this nation have spoken, and what they have said is that they want four more years of the same leadership and policy that they have experienced and that this is the direction that they want our country to proceed. Although it is not in my DNA to agree with them, it is within my fabric to respect the result. I wish that there could be more of that type of understanding in our local politics. So often there is a my way or the highway mentality by the citizens. This is recently demonstrated by the opinions concerning the smoking ordinance supporters. It's either no smoking in 100% of the city or you're and idiot. I realize that there is a lack of understanding and compassion concerning the opposite side of the aisle, but that is why Washington has failed to become effective in governing our country.
Last night at the City Council meeting it was demonstrated again. I asked the realtor representing the Eastern Star Home if he would accept a clause in the contract stating that upon completion of the sale the home would be torn down. This was the middle ground where a compromise could be reached. With that being unacceptable the stay of demolition was extended to December 22. I have a feeling that the status of the Eastern Star Home is not the determining factor of the sale of this property, as much as the price that the bank wants for the land. That being said, the process will run it's course and I am positive that the wrecking ball will hit the side of that structure on the 23rd of December. The Council has given every opportunity for a saviour to appear, and now its time to stop talking about the dog. The last breath of this structure will be taken in six weeks. Although miracles do happen
Another topic of concern was the Sapphire project, which is defined as an apartment complex between Center and Mesquite streets near UTA. Here is the reason that I supported this project. This will be a 5 story steel girder structure and its construction will be formidable. The decision before the Council was to abate 5 years of taxes once the structure was complete. In other words it was an incentive package. The current properties on this land are apartments that yield $7,000 annually in property taxes for the entire block. During the abated time the properties will pay $21,000, or three times the current annual rate. The land owner wants us to partner with him in deferring $2.1 million in property taxes that would not be collect unless the structure is built. This will occur over the first 5 years of existence, while he pours $41 million into the project. After that the tax base increases to its normal rate. I have met with John Hall, who is in charge of planning and development for UTA. This project fits in nicely with UTA's planned expansion to the east. They intend to fill in the area north of Mitchell, between Center and Mesquite up to First Baptist. In the overall spectrum of concerns for this project the positives out weigh the negatives overwhelmingly. That was what was before the Council and it passed 5-3 with Mr. Glaspie absent.