Voting "Yes" gets
our economy back on track and moving forward.
By Tom LeCompte
April 09, 2006
Citizens of Ketchikan,
What a wonderful opportunity we have. The opportunity to:
-Alleviate some of the congestion of downtown....crowded sidewalks
and long lines on the docks will be thinned out somewhat, and
the sidewalk from Tacquan Air to Sockeye Sam's where two walkers
cannot pass each other on the narrow water-side path, let alone
a bicycle or a stroller.... well you get the idea.
-Receive a beautiful waterfront promenade almost three fourths
of a mile long when all the docks are included.... great for
the crowds in the summer...and really great for all of us to
use in the 7 months the ships aren't here...16 feet wide, safe
enough to ride bicycles, stroll babies, walk dogs...enjoying
the space and the view...
-Have a drive down ramp for access for our fishing fleets, for
supply and rigging when the cruise ships are not in.....and in
addition the floats act as breakwaters for the local craft moored
at City Float/Casey Moran Harbor...and ...the re-configured city
float actually will allow more usable lengths of dock spaces.....
including skiff spaces for the Pennock Island residents who moor
-Have a reason to clean up the Newtown area and see an inspired
and invigorated boost for economic interests there....During
Spring Break I viewed Mr. Hauk's developments in Astoria and
his similar visions for the Waterfront Storage property are impressive....Businesses
from the Tunnel to the Mall will benefit from the new developments
.....if the new piers are built...
-Best of all, the "head tax" and private industry pays
for all these improvements.... local residents will not be stuck
holding the bill if any aspects of the cruise economy should
change...The bond lender assumes all the risk and their research
supports viability of the project.
-Get back some of the 100,000 visitors we will lose this season
because we do not have the dock space to accomodate them....visitors
who spend about $140 each out of pocket here in town....affecting
jobs, sales tax collection, and lost head tax revenue.
For the present it all seems to be positive....We host visitor-
guests who are excited to be here, stay for 6-10 hours, and move
on..... A certain percentage return.....some of these visitors
actually help sell our community to others.... our community
prospers and grows and we have our space in the evenings and
from late September until early May.....
Tourism is where Ketchikan's wagon is hitched right now. And
as much as we'd all like to see 1,000 family wage jobs come to
town, no one seems to have that in their pocket today or in the
forseeable future. So it seems that maintaining what we had is
the best course for the present. The new piers are needed to
get back those lost 100,000 visitors and their wallets.
Is there a saturation point? Certainly...Are we there yet? I
don't know....... I do know that the number of guests not coming
here will be 11% less than last year. Our local economy, and
most businesses, if not all, cannot weather too many years of
10 % losses.
Voting "Yes" on Tuesday will be your opportunity to
help get our economy back on track and moving forward.
Please vote yes.
Ketchikan, AK - USA
About: Tom LeCompte is an 18
year resident of Ketchikan, a teacher, and a voter.
11, 2006 Special Election Port of Ketchikan Improvements Project
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