To the Editor:
We are the proud owners of a condominium in downtown Port Clinton. Our permanent residence is only about one hour from our condo so we are able to spend a great deal of time in Port Clinton during the entire year and not just the summer. We have grown to love this small town environment and feel Port Clinton is unique because of its downtown area being on the water.
We volunteered at the Tall Ships festival and were thrilled with the “electricity” generated when locals and visitors remarked about the activities that encompassed the entire Port Clinton area. How exciting it was to see the tremendous turnout to participate in these activities! We were so proud to say we are a part of this wonderful area!!!!!
This one event showed that Port Clinton needs a development on the Waterworks property that IS a year-round attraction. As part-time residents but full-time taxpayers, we know this property SHOULD NOT include seasonal condos and/or a private facility with limited availability to the general population. To ensure short-term and long-term stability of our downtown area, we need a development that will bring visitors to our area all 12 months of the year. A perfect example of this can be seen on New Year’s Eve when everyone rallies together for the most unique New Year’s Eve celebration with the dropping of Wylie the Walleye. This activity annually receives national media attention and showcases our excitement and dedication to a small town. Not only would it bring business to our community but would also create jobs for our local residents and increase the tax revenue so our city leaders would have the finances necessary to continue to improve our streets, landscaping, etc.
We also believe the City of Port Clinton MUST retain “full” ownership of the land through a limited term lease. This land is our most valuable asset and once it is sold we lose control of what happens to this asset now and in the future. All residents/visitors should benefit from development and improved public access to this land. In our opinion, it would be unconscionable of our city leaders to sell off this asset. This sale may mean dollars in the short term but poverty in the long term for our city.
The success of an improved Waterparks area can only happen with the inclusion of a more public involvement; not just our city leaders. The Mayor vetoed city council’s plan to send out a Request for Proposals that would have given the City a choice of developers. Is the city administration working behind closed doors and creating division by not including council and the community?
Please tell City Council to protect our greatest asset by insisting on a development that will bring year-round economic growth to Port Clinton and ONLY LEASE THE LAND; NOT SELL IT! A vote to sell the Waterworks property for condos would be a vote to “sell out” Port Clinton and would be the last breath for our beloved downtown area!
June and Tom Galyen
(Part-Time Residents/Full-Time Taxpayers)