More details on the traveling road show by Chairman Scott York (R) and Supervisor Shawn Williams (R-Broad Run) to try to sell very unhappy nearby residents on the wonders of “professional” baseball (i.e., a stadium for a team so minor it’s not even affiliated with any real baseball team):
Some 240 very unhappy local residents of age 55+ communities located as close as half a mile away from the suddenly new location of the proposed stadium showed up Wednesday night for a three-hour session at which they expressed their concerns to York and Williams. Details at the “No Stadium on 7″ website; but here are the amazing highlights:
• York and Williams brought with them the promoter of the stadium, Bob Farren — who contributed some $20,000 to the election campaigns of York and his fellow Republican officials. When Farren tried to speak he was cut off by annoyed residents who “had clearly heard enough from him during his previous visit” when he presented a dog and pony show extolling the wonders of “professional” baseball
• York and Williams kept saying they want to bring “professional” sports to Loudoun . . . not mentioning that Farren, despite all his Hounds hoopla, has yet to even apply for his non-existent Hounds to become a member of the very misleadingly named extraordinarily minor league “Atlantic League of Professional Baseball” (unaffiliated with Major League Baseball)
• York and Williams kept saying they want to make Loudoun “a destination” . . . which did not go over very well with the audience members, who already live at this particular “destination” and kept trying to point out that while part of Kincora’s application (previously announced site for the stadium) included plans and proffers for necessary roads to handle stadium traffic, One Loudoun (the site suddenly announced in September) has no road infrastructure to handle it
• York claimed that the people of Loudoun have demonstrated how much they “want baseball,” citing… Farren’s own publicity hype and staged PR events promoting the non-existent Hounds
• York and Williams kept saying that the stadium would have to go through the “normal rezoning process” . . . completing ignoring the instant 9–0 vote of approval the Board in October gave Farren to “expedite” his sudden rezoning request and which even included open-ended language stating that this amendment “is expected to be co-processed” with “additional legislative applications” (how’s that for constituent service?)
What of course is most extraordinary is the way our elected representatives have become official cheerleaders and promoters of a private venture . . . private, but receiving extraordinary public benefits, including even a proposal by York to allow sales tax receipts from ticket and concession sales at the stadium to be used to finance the stadium. So much for Williams’s repeated assertions that the stadium will bring in “revenue” that “will increase the commercial tax base” and lower residential property taxes. You can’t lower taxes if you give the money back to the commercial venture bringing in the money!!