To the editor:
There has been much written about the crosstown connector, both for and against the project. I think all concerned would agree that First Avenue South is in need of repair as are several other streets. I would like to approach this topic from an economic standpoint, to show that the repair of First Avenue South is utilizing unique and one-time funding sources. However, the project must proceed in order to capture these funds.
The city will lose outside funding sources in this manner: the $300,000 I-Jobs must be used by June 30, 2013, the $589,000, committed by STADIUM, must be spent by Aug. 31, 2013. The RISE grant of $926,000 and the SOT Grant of $711,000 stipulate the project must be bid by Aug. 9, 2014.
Our city staff was very diligent, creative and persistent in securing these outside funds for this project. It would be irrational to allow these outside funds to be returned.
Using these outside funds on the repair of First Avenue South frees up funding for repair of other streets.
Encourage the City Council to do the responsible thing and vote to have the project put out for bid in February of 2013 for an April 2013 construction start. Thus, allowing the outside funding sources to be utilized.