Mayor Beutler on Antelope Valley

November 12, 2008 at 2:45pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in The Lincolnite Blog

How many of you read Mayor Beutler’s piece in Sunday’s Journal Star? If you haven’t read it already, it’s worth a few minutes of your time.

The piece is too short—likely for space reasons—but it contains some interesting segments. In fact, Mayor Beutler appears to concede several points to critics of the Antelope Valley Project. For example:

  • On money: “By not offering clear explanations of the numbers up front, the public became justifiably skeptical about cost management.”
  • On $200+ tour guides: “t’s important to recognize that expertise needs to match the task to save money.”
  • On misleading promises: “Government must be more careful about expectations and clearly communicate ALL the possibilities.”

Perhaps even more notably, Mayor Beutler acknowledged that Phase II of the project won’t happen any time soon: “Phase II of the project will have to wait until we address other pressing needs, such as road building and infrastructure development to encourage future growth.” That line surprised Deena Winter; for me, it was a tremendous relief to read those words. Many pieces of the Antelope Valley Project are “nice to haves”, not “must haves”. Meanwhile, high-priority projects around town are suffering. Phase II of the AVP includes projects that are even farther from “must have” status. We could shelve them for a decade and few people would miss them.

I hope we begin to see some real changes from City Hall following the publication of this piece. Mayor Beutler will need to take a proactive approach if he wants to ensure the upcoming arena vote goes his way.

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