Monday, January 24, 2005

Our Challenge

The president/CEO of the Albany County Convention & Visitors Bureau, Inc writes a letter to the TU and says that we should ignore the Brookings Institute Report(that references the Albany plans several times in its pages) that says building new convention centers won't help city economies. Not surprising since she is in the convention business and I'm sure would personally benefit quite a bit from this plan. It is the rest of us tax payers that get stuck with this big money losing project that will pay the price.

She references the personal interviews that have been done with regional meeting planners as the basis for going forward with the plan. Have you seen the results of those interviews? I highly recommend reading them. You can find them via the link on the home page of the www.albanyny.org site. They talked to 25 planners and the "proof" they provide us is in the list of “examples of the questions that were discussed and a general consensus of the answers provided”. That is what we are betting $185 million of OUR tax payer money on. You really should read the 1 page of example questions and consensus answers and see how confident you feel about this $185 million project. Its on page 4 of the plan.

Her letter claims "our challenge is to keep this process moving forward". I beg to differ. Our challenge is to do due diligence on this project and keep the process of figuring out what is best for Albany's future moving forward.

More convention center facts to follow shortly.