Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Peoria Times Observer endorses Regional Museum - Vote *YES* on public utility tax.

The following endorsement for the Peoria Regional Museum by the Peoria Times Observer wins my vote for best articulated position. It is so well put, I'm re-posting it in it's entirety here:

Vote 'yes' on tax, vote for vision

“Every great work, every great accomplishment, has been brought into manifestation through holding to the vision, and often just before the big achievement, comes apparent failure and discouragement,” said Florence Scovel Shinn.
No quote seems more appropriate to start a discussion of why we support the sales tax referendum for the downtown museum on the Riverfront.
Vision can be suppressed by people whose only goal is to peer through the looking glass darkly.
For months, we have seen this phenomenon in those who have criticized the “It’s Better Here” campaign.
The non-stop critics of the museum project make some valid points, but nothing that can move this city forward comes without risk and cost.
We are talking about a 25 cent increase on every $100 spent.
Granted, the costs may not end there.
The on-going costs could be an issue.
But, if we demanded more of ourselves and less of government, the funds to support a museum — over and above what memberships and entry fees bring in — could likely be covered.
If we banded together as a community to resolve some of the pressing issues we could likely trim the size of government and lower our taxes.
Instead, we often wash our hands of it and say,” Let the government handle it.”
The argument, however, cannot be all about money.
Vision has to be the primary factor.
Or, do we allow fear about the cost to cloud our judgment?
The question is: Do we have vision, or do we sit on our hands for every good idea that comes along and might cost something?
This country and this city were built on an idea that, together, we can make great things happen.
Have we come so far only to fall back into a state of fear?
Peoria is the mecca of Central Illinois.
We have the hotels, the educational facilities, the parks, the restaurants and the attractions that draw people for miles.
And, yes, we have the taxes to sustain those things.
But, the money it takes to sustain all those things is money well spent to live in a city that is safe, clean and full of things to do.
Those factors both attract new people to Peoria, and retain those citizens already here.
Peoria is a great city.
It should act like a great city.
Its citizens should be proud of this city and the visionaries who try to move it forward.
We are not saying the critics of the museum plan should be ignored or scorned.
We have respect for their point of view, and, we, too, feel the effects of the recession.
But, vision requires looking past today and toward tomorrow.
“The old ways are dead. And you need people around you who concur,” Hugh Macleod, in “How To Be Creative,” said.
“That means hanging out more with the creative people, the freaks, the real visionaries, than you’re already doing. Thinking more about what their needs are, and responding accordingly ... Avoid the folk who play it safe. They can’t help you any more. Their stability model no longer offers that much stability.”
Your vote next week will reflect faith in the community, or a lack of it.
Vote with vision.

This resounding endorsement comes right on the heals of a similar endorsement from the Peoria Association of Realtors. Businesses and industries that have significant "skin in the game" realize the importance of this project to our community.

Also, I have been talking with people that have early voted. It seems that despite efforts to educate the public on the wording for the referendum, many voters when alone in the voting booth are not realizing that the very last item on the referendum regarding the *increase in public utility tax* is indeed the BUILD THE BLOCK project. Please get the word out to your voting friends and family. Vote YES on the public utility tax, the last item on your ballot. Election Day is April 7th.


Anonymous said...

Terry Plickenbaughm

They say I am teacher but it is a joke all i do make suggestions about ex
Just like is a joke to have duplicate services, why are two museuems needed

I vote no, take more of our money away, there no money to bride teachers at college anymore, we live in corrupt illinois

terry standing around in his shorts plickenbaughm

ThinkingPositive said...

The ballot labels this public question a "Sales Tax to Support Public Facilities". It's the last item on the ballot and includes all the verbiage regarding the one quarter of one percent for a period not to exceed twenty (20) years, etc. etc.
The important thing is that the issue deserves a YES vote.