Letter: Time to make us proud
The Arts Campus at Willits provides the Basalt Town Council an opportunity to make us proud instead of sowing the seeds for another embarrassing headline. Moving forward immediately with a development agreement for the Arts Campus at Willits is a chance for the Town Council to show leadership and commitment to the residents of Basalt and the entire downvalley community. In fact, it is practically a no-brainer. The land for the campus was set aside by the developer (at no cost to the town), the residents of Willits paid a transfer tax to the town, a portion of which was designated, by ordinance, for an arts-type campus (the fund has approximately $800,000), and building costs and maintenance would be paid with private funding and ticket sales — no tax dollars would be used. Most importantly, the voters and residents of Basalt have a strong desire for a place to enjoy, music, lectures, theater, indie movies, culinary experiences, and on and on, without leaving their town.
For approximately the past 15 years, all prior town councils in Basalt have signed agreements and made promises to see the Arts Campus come to fruition. Now that the reality is about catch up with the dream, the current Town Council questions the wisdom of such a project. That is why now is the time for the council to ask questions, listen to the answers and collaborate to resolve issues, real or perceived. Now is the time for the council to show leadership by solving problems instead of creating them. And now is the time to demonstrate that the town of Basalt can come together and build something meaningful.
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