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dfwtiger

We should make our parks the Bettye Fine(st) in the Nation

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PLEASE! Sooooo typical.

Park projects facing knife

Monday, February 05, 2007BARNETT WRIGHTNews staff writer

Jefferson County's funding for the Railroad Reservation Park and Red Mountain Park, as well as money for dozens of non-profit agencies, could be in jeopardy because the county has other priorities, Commission President Bettye Fine Collins says.

Link to story:

http://www.al.com/news/birminghamnews/inde....xml&coll=2

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You're right, this is typical. I understand that Jefferson Co. is in extreme debt, and BFC does have to be fiscally responsible. However, balancing the budget is not the only responsibility for BHM/JeffCo elected officials. They have a responsibility to enhance the quality of life for the citenzens of the region, and these park projects are something that would go a long way in doing that. Cutting the 2.5 million JeffCo has dedicated to the park projects is not going to put a dent in the county's massive debt. Letting an opportunity like this pass will cost every current and future citizen of the area. What a shame.

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...Just another topic to highlight the serious leadership deficiency this area suffers from. Myopia abounds!

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It's officially, I am going to start pushing for election official recall in Alabama. We have too many inept elected officials.

I'm not surprised because Bettye Fine Collins and Bobby Humphryes have both proven they are jokes as County Commissioners. Just another reason why Jeffco needs a County Manager/Administrator.

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It's officially, I am not going to start pushing for election official recall in Alabama. We have too many inept elected officials.

I'm not surprised because Bettye Fine Collins and Bobby Humphryes have both proven they are jokes as County Commissioners. Just another reason why Jeffco needs a County Manager/Administrator.

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Hell would have to frozen over before the other 31 municipalities in Jeffco lets the City of Birmingham merge with the county. You see how factional they are about school districts, so you can just image how livid they would be about a city/county merger.

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Hell would have to frozen over before the other 31 municipalities in Jeffco lets the City of Birmingham merge with the county. You see how factional they are about school districts, so you can just image how livid they would be about a city/county merger.

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I got this letter in my inbox this morning. Please do what they ask and WRITE your commissioners!

JeffCo Commission Threatens to Withdraw Funding Promise

Yesterday's Birmingham News reported that Jefferson County Commission President Bettye Fine Collins has called for a review of all previous commission commitments and is specifically threatening to revoke allocations to Red Mountain Park, Railroad Reservation Park and the Cultural Alliance of Greater Birmingham. Collins, along with newly elected commissioners Jim Carns and Bobby Humphryes-not to be confused former Alabama footballer and Friend of RMP Bobby Humphrey-stated that "capital needs were neglected in favor of parks and non-profit organizations" by the Larry Langford-led commission which they have succeeded.

Regardless of the politics behind this message or the validity of RMP's signed contract with the commission, we should weigh this news very seriously and use it as a call to action. The commission's $7.5 million pledge to the park represents the bedrock of our financing and an official "thumbs-up" that has helped open the doors of corporate sponsors and position the project for federal grants. Current fund proposals suggest that the JeffCo money could be matched 3:1 by the end of this process-undercutting any notion that is a burden solely on the commissions' shoulders.

So, what can we do? The commission needs to hear from its constituents that RMP is vitally important to this county, not just as a public interest project but in real terms. Here are some financial projections from ConsultEcon's Tom Martin given at the last public forum:

* RMP would bring approximately $29.4 million to the local economy annually

* RMP would generate $1 million in tax revenue for state, county and local entities annually

* RMP would create 452 jobs in the community, park itself and supporting industries

If you have the time, a personal letter or email to the commissioners would be a great way to let them know that RMP would not only provide a wonderful greenspace in the midst of our cities, but would also be a tangible asset and worthwhile investment for the county. You can find contact information here or below:

Jefferson County Commission

Jefferson County Courthouse

716 Richard Arrington Jr Blvd North

Birmingham, AL 35203

* Bettye Fine Collins - President

Commissioner of Finance and General Services

[email protected]

* Jim Carns

Commissioner of Environmental Services

[email protected]

* Bobby Humphryes

Commissioner of Roads and Transportation

[email protected]

* Larry Langford

Commissioner of Health and Human Services

[email protected]

* Shelia Smoot

Commissioner of Information Technology

[email protected]

Currently, we don't know how the commission will formalize this budget review process and if there will be any chance for public participation. That is one question we plan to ask. In the meantime, thanks in advance for any efforts you can muster in this campaign and let's hope the commission can be swayed to think more sensibly about RMP's genuine worth to all of us.

Thanks for your support,

John Cobbs

Friends of Red Mountain Park

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balancing the budget is not the only responsibility for BHM/JeffCo elected officials.

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Why is JeffCo in extreme debt ? It's the most populous county in the state by far,

and one of the wealthiest per capita.

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This all came together to produce an enourmous debt that, if memory serves me correct, is well over two billion. Sadly, after all of these years of payoffs, politics, and prosecutions, some of these Federally-mandated projects still aren't finished.

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Two freakin' billion dollars ? :blink: I had no idea the situation was that bad ...

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Commissioner Larry Langford, who oversaw the finance department from 2002 to 2006, said the county established a venture capital fund in 2006 with $10 million. "You can take money out of that fund because you're venturing out doing parks with the money, so it's the same thing," Langford said.

I doubt that. Can you spend the 'park'ing lot money on Red Mountain then?

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Two freakin' billion dollars ? :blink: I had no idea the situation was that bad ...

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Well, I hope the parks actually happen, because I enjoy walking at parks whenever I visit a city.

I know that upgrading parks is a big priority over here in T-town & we've had pretty good success finding the money.

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David, I wouldn't go that far to say that. Larry Langford and Smoot at least seems to be the only ones that actual care about the county's future. Their tactics and actions maybe sketchy at times, but at least you know what their intentions are.

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You should look up the names "Jeff Germany" (sp), "Chris McNair", or "Jefferson County Supersewer" on Google. Bam! You will find all the information you need to know about the billion-dollar "supersewer" trial and controversy. The SEC (Security and Exchange Commission) is still investigating Jeffco on that and is now about the current bond issues with bids by current commission president none other than Bettye Fine Collins. That lady is bad news and her inept, corrupt ass was on the commission when the supersewer scandal was going down. But she swore than she knew nothing about it. I'll believe that like I will start believing in Santa Claus again at age 21.

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Kincaid optimist county to pledge for parks; others bleak

Kincaid is still keeping hope that the County Commission will keep its promise to commit to funding the Railroad Reserve and Red Mountain Parks. Although I admire him (somewhat) for his optimism, let's be realistic. Bettye Fine Collins and her flunkies aren't thinking about Birmingham because they are only feel they will be held accountable to their "constituents" in their districts. It is no coincidence that Collins 'n dem plan to kill the funding for the project is due to them "questioning and reevaluating" the source of this funding. Sounds like "Voodoo economics" at a county-level to me. Collins 'n dem waste $15,000 and make excuse for themselves, but if any money decisions are done by them it is "suspicious" and "needs reevalutation". :rolleyes:

Langford is right once again, Birmingham is at fault for its footdragging. Kincaid knew Birmingham is nowhere near and hasn't been in the past decade of being broke. He is an inept clown and the Council really isn't any better. I hope November that it is a page turner for the city with the mayoral election and election of a few councilmembers as well.

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Kincaid optimist county to pledge for parks; others bleak

Kincaid is still keeping hope that the County Commission will keep its promise to commit to funding the Railroad Reserve and Red Mountain Parks. Although I admire him (somewhat) for his optimism, let's be realistic. Bettye Fine Collins and her flunkies aren't thinking about Birmingham because they are only feel they will be held accountable to their "constituents" in their districts. It is no coincidence that Collins 'n dem plan to kill the funding for the project is due to them "questioning and reevaluating" the source of this funding. Sounds like "Voodoo economics" at a county-level to me. Collins 'n dem waste $15,000 and make excuse for themselves, but if any money decisions are done by them it is "suspicious" and "needs reevalutation". :rolleyes:

Langford is right once again, Birmingham is at fault for its footdragging. Kincaid knew Birmingham is nowhere near and hasn't been in the past decade of being broke. He is an inept clown and the Council really isn't any better. I hope November that it is a page turner for the city with the mayoral election and election of a few councilmembers as well.

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PARK PROPONENTS CLOSER TO MONEY GOAL

It seems the Friends of Red Mountain and the Red Mountain Comission have made major strides to raise the $7M towards purchasing the 1,108 acres of land along the prominent ridge. Neither group has disclosed who are the donors as of late, but they said that they 2/3rds of the way to accomplish purchasing the land for the Park. The Red Mountain Commission is currently in negotiations with Jeffco as to how they are going to fund the Park, but no agreements have been finalized. The Community Foundation does plan on giving the Red Mountain Park $5.85M

Also the Ruffner Mountain Nature Reserve is also undergoing an 500-acre expansion, but no mention of any costs of how much it will be to do this. Its expecting to open its mountaintop education and visitor after being promised $1.5 M. The Railroad Reserve Park is expected to get $10M for its startup and construction which is to begin in the fall.

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