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Letter: Raise the money first

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opinion River Falls, 54022
River Falls Wisconsin 2815 Prairie Drive / P.O. Box 25 54022

As we all know by now, the taxpayers will be funding the tunnel from River Crest Elementary to Camp St. Croix, after the board promised to use private money for construction. If a business did this it would be considered a "bait and switch" sales practice and they would be held liable for such unscrupulous behavior.

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I'm wondering if any other readers see the similarity between the taxpayer-funded tunnel to Camp St. Croix and the push for a new library. The Hudson Library Foundation has promised to raise approximately $5 million toward the cost of this new library. To date they haven't raised any money at all. Perhaps, like the tunnel project, the big donors are waiting in the wings to see if the project can be "jump started" by the taxpayers. Or maybe, like the tunnel project, the Hudson Library Foundation is hoodwinking the taxpayers into taking the first step only to find out that there really isn't $5 million in donations to be had.

What will happen if the taxpayers commit to a loan for such an expenditure and the private donations aren't forthcoming? Like the now infamous tunnel project, will we be stuck paying for the entire cost? I have a better idea for those looking to increase our already burdensome taxes. Why don't the ardent supporters of this new library raise $5 million first and then we can talk about whether or not the taxpayers feel the need to support the balance. I think we would all be wise to learn from the tunnel, that once taxpayer dollars are committed there is no going back, even if the private donations don't materialize.

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