David Corr and Linda Poole are against the SPLOST. Will it matter? Or will it matter more that Mayor Ellis is against it?
My suspicion is that, while David Corr will be able to garner some anti-SPLOST support, the mayor’s opposition to the SPLOST might actually benefit the SPLOST. So, now the question becomes, does the mayor really want the SPLOST and is hoping his strident opposition will get it passed?
Confused? So am I.
Here’s why I support this SPLOST. First, it is voter approved. The Commission and City Council only recommend it. Second, it is to pay off debt and expand the jail: two areas that desperately need to be dealt with. As for the jail expansion bit, the SPLOST won’t actually pay for the jail expansion, but will cover the debt payments.
The Bibb County LEC is long overdue for expansion. Because the mayor has been such an ass about closing Hawthorne Street, the costs of the jail have gone up — though not as much as if the mayor had gotten his way and the whole complex was moved. Many people do not know that the jail has been under a court order regarding capacity. The federal court is tired of dealing with it and, if the situation is not resolved, will probably not be too happy.
By restricting the SPLOST to debt repayment, the mayor cannot play in the pool of money. Charlie Bishop’s insistence on that was a brilliant idea.
I’m in favor of the SPLOST. Sure, spending needs to be cut. It should be cut. But, it’s not going to be cut. We do, however, have a serious debt burden that has left the city on the edge of bankruptcy. I don’t want the city to go bankrupt because that would hurt us all.
I intend to vote for this SPLOST. It will expire after a few years and, if the voters want it renewed, by then C. Jack Ellis will be gone.