New convention center

January 5, 2014 • Dear Editor

Dear Editor,

It was with great interest that I read the convention center article (Wed. 11/20). Correct me if I’m wrong, but the Roswell Hospitality Association questioned the process in which the city imposed the new $2.50 per night bed tax. There seemed to be a lack of preparation in justifying this boondoggle. This action affects not only the hospitality industry, but the [auth] citizens of Roswell. Voters should have a say in whether to waste money on a convention center or to save money in a joint venture to build an event center. Taxpayer money should have taxpayer approval for its use. Our mayor seems to think the taxpayer votes are unimportant.

Before we build either a convention center or an event center, we should consider “silly” things like better pay and more recruitment for our police officers. Money could also be spent for a more presentable downtown by tearing down the vacated buildings that have been left standing for years. Or (heaven forbid) we should provide a safer park that is free of gangs where the children can play.

Common sense would dictate that we should combine the two projects and have an event-convention center and put the issue up to the voters who are paying for it. These decisions should be made by the voters, not the city government. A new bed tax will discourage visitors and will not bring in more tax dollars from the tourists.

Judith K. Scholtz

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