Thursday, September 18, 2008

Ogden Can't Afford Extravagant Playpen

Spot on letter to the editor from today's Standard-Examiner

By George K.

I love Barbara Jensen’s letter to the editor, “Ogden can’t afford ‘extravagant playpen" in today’s Standard Examiner! She is exactly right! Ogden has a king-size playground because it has an oversized child for Mayor! We have a game arcade, a movie megaplex theater complex, the promise of an ice climbing tower, and flatland gondola, and now he expects the taxpayers of Ogden to build him a velodrome with a number of tennis courts so he can always have access to a court, an inline skate track, an indoor running track, and other competitive sports. As if that isn’t enough to keep him occupied, he wants a BMX track, an Olympic swimming pool, and a horse riding facility with riding trails. And to accommodate the out-of-town users, he is creating a downtown camp ground which may cost us the support and participation of the Pioneer Heritage Foundation’s support with our Ogden Pioneer Day Celebration.

Not only can we NOT financially afford Godfrey’s “playpen,” but we can’t afford how he is impacting the residents’ spirit of pride and ownership. We no longer have a town with stores where we love to shop or feel safe just strolling down the street. Godfrey has taken our town from us and given it to visitors, tourists and immature adults who have the time and money to frequent his “playpen.” Ogden is no longer a place that the average resident can enjoy and afford.

Barbara’s statistics will not convince Godfrey that he is going in the wrong direction at this time of recession/depression. He doesn’t live in a real, every-day world that the rest of us do. Besides no one is as intelligent as he. As I have said for quite some time now: “Godfrey’s visions are Ogdenites’ nightmares!”

A very good letter, Barbara Jensen! Kudos to you for taking the time to put your concerns in writing and sending them to the paper.

8 comments:

Curmudgeon said...

GK:

It was a good letter, particularly with respect to who should be paying for building expensive speculative venues for niche sports. But when you conclude from it, as you did, this: "Ogden is no longer a place that the average resident can enjoy and afford" --- you go too far.

I think Ogden is a nice place to live and one that can be enjoyed by the average resident. I certainly like living here. Granted, the Mayor's administration of the city's affairs is often unwise, particularly regarding investing public funds in speculative development projects. But the cost of living in Ogden has not risen more than the cost of living elsewhere, and Godfrey is not the cause of the current economic problems of ordinary folks: e.g. the rising cost of energy, the rising cost of food, declining number of jobs, mortgage foreclosures and declining real value of wages and middle class and lower incomes. [We have a different Republican executive to thank for those.]

Had a guest yesterday, in town for business. We spent part of the late afternoon hiking on the trails above Mt. Ogden Park, and part of the evening walking around Historic 25th Street. Neither cost us a dime. Felt perfectly safe doing both, and enjoyed both. Ogden has much going for it that can be enjoyed by ordinary people, still. [I doubt those who regularly shell out $35 a minute for a wind tunnel ride are ordinary people, economically speaking, in any case.]

Dorrene Jeske said...

Comment moved to main article

George K said...

Curmudgeon,

I agree that Ogden is all that you say it is. I love it also. But I did hear one of the Council members who was elected in 2005 say that a retired long-time friend was contacted to put up a campaign sign and was told that they were moving because they could not afford to live in Ogden any longer. The mortgage on their home was paid and they owed money to no one, but they could not afford to live in Ogden. I don’t know their circumstances but I believe that there are a number of people in the same boat especially with the increases in utilities. That doesn’t detract from Ogden’s beauty and how nice and peaceful it is to live here, but what it does mean is that the administration and council need to look closer at the fees and charges with which they burden the residents. Godfrey needs to take into consideration that the population of Ogden is aging and provide some amenities that meets their needs.

disgusted said...

i find it amazing that when everywhere else in the state of utah that you look city officials are cutting budgets and stopping development of projects that involve the use of city money our mayor continues to divert and spend more money on his very large pet projects.
state legislature has even scheduled an immediate special session to relook at the budget this year to cut expenditures. tax reciepts through out the state are down including here in ogden.
city council need to start saying no to everything that the mayor asks for when it comes to spending or diverting dollars within the various budgets until we know better where this economy is headed.

Curmudgeon said...

disgusted:

As I recall, if the Council does not approve the zoning change for the Windsor Hotel, the City may be obliged to repurchase the property from the current owners. That's about a quarter mil right there, as I recall.

George K said...

Curmudgeon,

I don't believe that the City would have to buy the Windsor. I have heard talk that the owners bought the hotel knowing the height restrictrion and also took the $100K from the City without saying a word about the height limit on the building.

OgdenLover said...

Comment bumped to top shelf

anonymous coward said...

anoymous post deleted. It seems that some trolls go out of their way to break the rules.

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