Letter: Steps RICO board must take to address buildings


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Posted Online: Feb. 20, 2013, 2:51 pm
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Nowhere is the crisis of confidence in the Rock Island County Board more evident than in the problems related to the county buildings. Over the past six months, it has been communicated that the county building and the courthouse are in such a dilapidated condition that they must be replaced.

For decades, maintenance and updates have been ignored and funding sent elsewhere. The lack of credibility on the part of the board is evident.

Attempts to relocate have been met with suspicion. Now, out of the blue, they want to buy acreage downtown. People see potential for under-the-table deals in their every move. The board has failed to communicate anything that resembles a clear honest process for evaluating and identifying the best solution.

The best way forward would be to organize a committee to look at the alternatives and make a recommendation. To insure a recommendation based on integrity, I would propose they start with board representation from Don Johnson (D), and Drue Milke (R). Both have shown themselves to be willing to ask the hard questions.

I would also urge chairman Phil Banazsek and member Steve Meersman to stay out.

Mark Schwiebert and Bobby Schilling would be other men of integrity who might be considered for leadership roles. Options of multi-year upgrade/repair, renovating along the lines of the Scott Christiansen proposal, or building new near the current location should be in the project scope. Findings of the committee should be publicized.

One thing is certain: Due to neglect and mismanagement by current board leadership, any solution will likely cost taxpayers in the form of yet another increase in property taxes.

William S. Bloom,
Moline

















 



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  Today is Thursday, April 24, the 114th day of 2014. There are 251 days left in the year.

1864 -- 150 years ago: We learn that it is a contemplation to start a paper mill in Rock Island during the summer by a gentleman from the East.
1889 -- 125 years ago: The gates of Oklahoma were swung open at noon today, and a throng of more than 30,000 settlers started over its soil.
1914 -- 100 years ago: The Iowa Coliseum Co. was incorporated with $40,000 capital and planned a building on 4th Street between Warren and Green streets in Davenport.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Plans are being discussed for resurfacing the streets in the entire downtown district of Rock Island.
1964 -- 50 years ago: Some 45 jobs will be created at J.I. Case Co.'s Rock Island plant in a expansion of operations announced yesterday afternoon at the firm's headquarters in Racine, Wis.
1989 -- 25 years ago: Gardeners and farmers cheered, but not all Quad-Citians found joy Saturday as more than an inch of rain fell on the area. Motorists faced dangerous, rain-slick roads as the water activated grease and grime that had built up during dry weather.








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