Advertisement

No matter what it's called, Shank's plan funds stadium

February 18, 2000

Imagine for a moment that you are the parent of a child with a sweet tooth. You and the child enter a convenience store with a large candy counter, and the child asks you for money. If you provide the cash, you're reasonably sure that the child will buy candy.

As a responsible parent, do you: Fork over the money and give the child permission to buy candy. Or do you give the child the funds, then close your eyes and pretend that he or she will buy something else with it?

Pretending is what Washington County's delegation to the Maryland General Assembly is doing now, in regard to the plan Del. Chris Shank put together to pay down the county's sewer debt and build a new minor league baseball stadium.

Stung by citizen opposition to the project, they're searching for political cover now, but they know that if they pass this plan, the city's going to use its share of the dollars freed up by the plan for the stadium. (It would be interesting to see their reaction if, after all this negotiation, the city decided to drop the stadium project and apply the cash to tax relief, for example.)

Advertisement

We would ordinarily give lawmakers a pass on this deception, since anyone who doesn't recognize the gyrations that the delegation is going through to avoid speaking the truth probably doesn't understand the political process.

However, when delegation members start blaming The Herald-Mail for not going along with this transparent charade, and implying that the facts haven't been properly reported, we have to object.

For those with short memories, it was state Sen. Don Munson who said that any stadium plan had to be tied to reducing the county's sewer debt. Shank responded with a plan which cuts the debt and does not use local property or income-tax dollars for stadium construction.

Now the delegation is feeling the heat, and has responded by trying to tell the public that the ducky plan they've put together is some other critter altogether. Call it what you want, folks, but if it funds stadium construction, it would seem to be a stadium plan.

The Herald-Mail Articles
|
|
|