Wednesday, January 23, 2008

GREAT TIME to build a Convention Center-NOT

There is NEVER a good time to use taxpayer's money to subsidize private businesses but this looks like one of the worst for Metro Nashville to build a Convention Center. There are many other public priorities that require the time and money of our elected representatives.


Metro Nashville can still afford to build a $595 million downtown convention center despite having to spend $18 million in reserves to balance its annual budget and being almost maxed-out on issuing bonds, the city's finance chief said Tuesday.

Dipping into the reserve fund to balance its budget at the end of the current fiscal year could hurt the city's standing with bond rating agencies, making it more expensive to borrow money for building projects.

Finance Director Rich Riebeling said Metro could still afford to build the convention center, which would be financed through fees and taxes collected mostly from tourists.