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What disturbs me most about Statesman’s PR push to pass their urban-style resort is the cynical way they seek to divide the Brinnon community.
Their PR materials paint a picture of a bleak and depressed Brinnon with no alternative but to throw our lot in with a Canadian developer and hope the benefits trickle down.
Are we that gullible and desperate? Apparently. The Board of County Commissioners and the Department of Community Development are willing to let this developer come up with one overblown proposal after another with no financial assurances that we won’t foot the bill for their mistakes. Statesman sought to attract rich Chinese to finance their scheme. That failed. Then they proposed that Jefferson County “grant” them $2 million, the state “grant” them nearly $10 million and issue $26.5 million in tax-free bonds.
This is similar to other resort schemes Statesman floated (unsuccessfully) in Canada. Entice local residents with dreams of jobs and increased tax revenue, then reveal the nasty surprise – they don’t have the money to do it.
Ten years of bickering over a resort can’t be financed and will probably never be built, illustrates the failure of the county to plan for its communities. Brinnon has a sub-area plan that articulates the will of the people of Brinnon. We’re an isolated rural village. We want appropriate services, job opportunities and moderate development. In the 16 years since that plan was adopted, not one single thing has been implemented.
Memo to Statesman and any elected officials or candidates running interference for them: We will not be silenced, we will not be marginalized. We know a con when we see one. You can’t dump an urban-scale resort in our backyard and leave us to clean it up.