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Letter: Taxpayers shouldn't foot bill for Detroit Mountain

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Becker County residents, our county has no business getting involved in purchasing the Detroit Mountain. This kind of business venture is left to the private sector. Becker County residents/taxpayers, we need to say as tax paying citizen's "no" to the mountain project.

If you have been following the newspaper articles from the last few months, the talk was "It would be fine if it wasn't at the taxpayers expense." That coming from a couple of our elected county commissioners.

"April 14, 2010 "It's a huge opportunity" said commissioner John Bellefeuille, he would like to see it happen -- but only if it's not at the expense of county taxpayers."

Same April 14 article, commissioner Harry Salminen quoted "I don't want to see any taxpayer dollars laid out for acquiring the property."

Harry and John, could you tell the concerned taxpayers of Becker County exactly where the money to purchase Detroit Mountain would come from if it wouldn't come from the taxpayers.

Becker County residents/taxpayers, we need to say enough. Who do they think they are fooling, when they say that taxpayers money would not be used to purchase the Detroit Mountain? Every red cent that the county operates on is paid for by taxpayers with their hard earned dollars. I say it again to all Becker County residents, don't let them fool you and tell you different. It's all taxpayers money. Make your county officials spend it wisely and hold them accountable.

If Detroit Mountain is such a good business venture, wouldn't one think that some hot shot investor would have seen the great money making opportunities that just await. It's still for sale.

We can't spend monies on projects with no real benefits to the entire county. Only to benefit a few that are pushing for it. I would say if this is such a great business venture, maybe the business people here in Detroit Lakes that are pushing the issue, purchase the Detroit Mountain themselves without taxpayers dollars.

And as far as using our children as a crutch to get things done in our community, tired of all the excuses we hear. For instance in a Feb. 21, 2010 article in the Becker County Record newspaper one quoted "We need to get our kids active, instead of sitting indoors in front of a TV screen." Stop. We are blessed with the amount of things already in our community for our kids to participate and do. And many of these activities have already been paid for by hard earned tax dollars, just to name a few, Detroit Lakes Community Center, Skateboard Park, BMX track at fairgrounds, multiple baseball and softball parks, tennis court, frisbee golf at city park, cross country ski trails, ice skating rinks, indoor and outdoor rinks, biking paths, city beach, kids beach, many baseball programs in the summer, not funded by taxpayers, some of them are funded by Legion, VFW, etc. Thanks to them. The list goes on and on. So instead of saying we need to get our kids active, we as parents need to be more responsible and quit using the TVs, cellphones, Playstations, X-Boxes, etc., as babysitters.

I urge each and every one of our citizens in Becker County to call their county officials (commissioners) and tell them whether you are for or against the Detroit Mountain project.

And tell them that the Detroit Mountain should be on the ballot for November election, yea or nay, let's see how the entire county feels about this issue.

In an article in the Becker County Record dated Feb. 21, 2010, Brian Berg, county administrator, spoke at the meeting and said "Dare to dream what we could do with that mountain."As Rita Boyce wrote "I'm not sure he is a Becker County property owner and taxpayer," she is correct. Brian Berg resides in Fargo, ND so the money we pay him for his work here in Becker County as county administrator not only leaves our county, it leaves our state.

At a price of approximately $1.2 million to purchase Detroit Mountain, with no more tax forfeited land trade, is this something the taxpayers of Becker County really want to pay for.

As I stated earlier in this article let's put it to a public vote this November. -- Richard Grossman, Detroit Lakes

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