Letter: Rifle Rec Center project being misrepresented | PostIndependent.com

Letter: Rifle Rec Center project being misrepresented

Opponents of the proposed 0.74 percent sales tax increase for the Rifle Rec Center continue to misrepresent the project as a financial boondoggle in waiting, shouting warnings of everything from financial disaster to the end of civilization as we know it.

However, when you truly talk to one of them, really look inside their “reason” for opposition, they present not one shred of evidence to support their glum assumptions. Funny how they continue rallying behind the ironic slogan “Proof not Platitudes” yet that is all they continue to offer.

The fact of the matter is Rifle is and has been trying to regain its stature as a regional center. Rifle has a chance to bring a needed amenity that will bring with it economic growth. The U.S. Department of Commerce has shown that when a large scale project such as this is developed in an area it causes a certain level of economic activity that multiplies the initial investment. The most conservative multiplier used by the Department is 1.9. What this means is that for a $21 million investment in Rifle we can expect $39.9 million in economic activity from the jobs created, materials and goods purchased as well as smaller things like workers buying lunches and gas.

One need only look to Fruita, which built their recreation center in 2010, arguably much harder economic times than we face today, to see the benefits of this scale of a construction project on the local economy. In 2010-11, while the rest of Mesa County’s sales tax receipts were down, Fruita not only maintained the rate of their sales tax revenue, it grew by 1 percent. This year they will see receipts higher than pre-recession collections.

We who support this project know that this is the time to invest in Rifle. Some, like myself, will not be able to vote but will happily continue to support the City with our labor and our tax dollars. A yes vote means jobs. Proof given, No platitudes.

Aron Diaz


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