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Thursday, December 09, 2010
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City's involvement not necessary
Hotel Clovis keeps turning up in the news. Is it destined to be an eyesore, a money pit, or a slum? Or will tax money be spent to demolish it? As long as government is involved, you can bet those are the only realistic outcomes.
I realize the city believes it owns Hotel Clovis, but no government “owns” anything it did not steal, or buy (and maintain) with money it stole. Also, government will make it impossible for owners to actually use and profit from their property so that they give up and walk away, handing “ownership” to the city. Which still qualifies as “theft” in my book. Of course, governments have euphemisms like “eminent domain” and “taxation” for these acts of theft, and refuse to accept responsibility for making a project unworkable.
I suspect the above-mentioned red tape, taxation, and regulations cause most vacancies to begin with, since you can adjust your overhead and business model except where government is concerned. These same hurdles also prevent vacant buildings from being put to good use. Unless you are rich or politically connected you have little chance of making it through the regulatory and extortion gauntlet of “fees” and “permits” that starting an ambitious project requires. You never have the opportunity to see how the market would respond to your idea.
So people turn to uses that completely depend on government’s support.
I have no problem with “low-income housing.” Poor people need a place to live, too. What I do have a problem with are entrepreneurs who go seeking government handouts for their projects; which when completed will only survive through more government handouts. This is not sustainable development, but a planned failure. It ties up your money that you could have better spent. Profitable use that doesn’t require locally or federally stolen money to be infused would be a much wiser use of any building than planning for a subsidized project.
I also have a problem when some government entity believes it “needs” to get involved. It is not the government’s money to dole out. Not for the renovations, nor for the eventual rent payments. All government can do to help is step aside.
A good suggestion I heard was to let some film production company blow up the building for a movie. Think of all the attention and money that would bring in.
I know some people would hate to see the building destroyed, no matter how it is done. So would I. But, if it is to be destroyed due to government interference, I would rather see it be done without costing taxpayers, and perhaps bringing in some business to the locals at the same time.
I’m available for a bit part in the film, as long as I don’t have to portray a bad guy.