by Sam Hieb
At last night’s meeting, the Guilford County Board of Commissioners took the third option— voting to table a decision on the High Point’s tax increment financing plan for a downtown stadium for 60-90 days.
If I took one thing out of last night’s meeting, it was that commissioners seemed more open to the project than they did at the Sept 7 meeting, when they harshly ripped county officials for presenting with “sloppy” numbers (as Commissioner Hank Henning put it) detailing the tax values of the proposed TIF district.
News & Record reports:
The vote was 8-1, with High Point’s Carlvena Foster opposing.
“Boo! Boo!” shouted dozens of people in the audience when Commissioner Melvin “Skip” Alston made the motion to delay the decision — something High Point leaders say could jeopardize the project.
“Therein lies the problem with the disrespect with this project,” Alston told them, adding “You don’t want a vote tonight, because you would get an overwhelming ‘no’ vote.
“Don’t demand that we be on your schedule … Stop doing these bully tactics,” Alston said.
High Point Mayor Bill Bencini was in the audience, and he responded after the vote that the City Council would have to review their options. Note as well the comment beneath the N&R story that “there are windows of time with some things. if the window closes, opportunity is lost.” Quite the opposite— there is no window of time on this project—there absolutely nothing stopping project supporters from breaking ground today if they wish. But this is what happens when you get the government involved in what should be private sector projects.