What a waste of money! The Mello Roos Board's recent decision to spend up to $4 million on the Prewett Park Civic Center complex's design, over 15 percent out of $26 million available, is wasteful. Especially when what's proposed to be built has so many unknowns, such as the additional yearly maintenance and operating costs. That $4 million should instead be rebated to the district's taxpayers, a number of whom are financially hurting and some are on the verge of losing their homes.
Worse yet are the planned design expenditures for a 3,000-square-foot police substation. The public's been given the false impression that a police substation provides improved or better public safety. Some board and city officials continue to actually promote such ignorant ideas to the unknowing public. These kinds of foolish and false ideas have actually contributed to some of the public wanting a substation built there.
Police substations are fixed facilities, period! They don't move, speak, eat, detect or prevent crime, or even arrest criminals. Do you get it? Police substations are fixed facilities, nothing more! If any of you see one patrolling the streets and making arrests, please let me know. In fact, the neighborhoods, some just a block away, in a number of cases actually harbor real criminal activity and the criminals involved. I personally have investigated, in a number of cities, serious crimes near these police substations - where rapes, robberies, assaults, burglaries, and even murders have occurred a block or two away. Those are the facts, people!
If the board and city officials are so intent upon placing a police substation out there in Prewett Park, there's by far a less costly and equally accomplishing alternative. Instead, purchase and place a mobile police substation facility there, like other jurisdictions have done within their communities. There are so many models to choose from, and when you "need" it elsewhere (emergencies/disasters) you just move it there. Simple, yes!
The board members, city officials and public must understand that the public's safety is accomplished by human beings, not by fixed and inanimate buildings. That's why police officers drive police vehicles, to be able to get to and patrol our communities! They're the ones who perform crime prevention and detection, make arrests, talk to people, and even drink coffee and eat donuts - which a police substation facility obviously doesn't do.
Get it? Duh! Of course, then there are those who think that a shaved-headed or bald-headed officer who wears shades and black gloves is buffed up from who knows what, etc., performs better than other officers. They don't!
People, there are far better, less costly, and more effective ways to accomplish the same things. The $4 million recently approved expenditure by the board is another example of unnecessary waste of your limited tax dollars. I feel for the district's taxpayers, and am glad I'm not one of them. If I were, I'd be looking for better answers, rebates, and consider getting rid of such waste - and those responsible!
Ralph A. Hernandez