Monday, January 18, 2016

Columbus downtown.

https://youtu.be/C25p4OvHpf0



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There has been a conversation on facebook that sort of ties in to what I have been thinking about for 3 or 4 days now.

As you may or may not know I'm running for City Council again.  Two years ago when I was asked I decided I would run because I felt that Columbus was on the cusp of growing in the correct direction. Columbus was becoming a younger town.   I did not want to Obama-it and jump onto a sinking ship hoping to save it.

Now two years later the question came up again and I honestly believe Columbus is better now then two years ago.  Our debt is being handled finally even with a HUGE reconstruction project slated for next year.  We have $2 million in street projects happening THIS year. A new city website will go live next month, and we actually have money to actively promote Columbus.  

We have had almost record breaking residential growth with more then a dozen houses being built and more on tap for this coming year.  We will have hopefully 2 or 3 new restaurants downtown and a number of things no one will notice but will save residents a considerable amount of money.

For instance - in MOST city's if your sewer lateral busts you pay to fix it AND you pay to fix the road in front of your house if it needs to be dug up (sewer mains are in the middle of roads).  BAM $10,000.  In Columbus you will not pay for that. The city is in good enough shape to pay for it.   And there are much bigger things on the horizon.

So if/when you complain about property taxes remember what you get for those taxes which is something we have been working on.  Trying to get your taxes to buy more.

Fixing downtown - what a headache THAT one is as it's a long term solution. What we need is to have youth involved in city government.  I contacted our High School Principle (unanswered email) but no response. What the current City Council does will only work if future Councils don't drop the ball so we need. Everything has a 10 year lag it seems.  

If we can get youth involved in city politics and have them tell us what they need to make their experience better  that would clear a path for some of those students to see city government really is for the people and MAYBE they will run for aldermen to keep this train moving in the right direction.

If not all we have are default rubber stampers like the past that are happy with no change.

SO - downtown is a work in progress. We will have a new downtown streetscape in 2017.  We need more bike paths to get downtown and we need to tell people what businesses are actually in our downtown district (perhaps a flyer to all citizens on what businesses are down there).

Bringing business to Columbus is a tough sell with Sun Prairie to the south with 30,000 people and Beaver Dam to the north with 16,000 and then Columbus with 5,000.  If you are a small business which one do you take.  So we need to make Columbus family friendly (bike paths) we need to offer AND promote something the others do not have.

But Columbus as a whole is doing well I feel.   We're next up after Sun Prairie and it's beginning to show with more people moving here.

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We all know who John Wilkes Booth is right?   Nobody ever talks about his brother Edwin Booth.

Many theatrical historians consider Edwin one of the the greatest American actors of the 19th century.  The Booth Theater in New York was considered one of the grandest most spectacular theaters of it's time.

But here is something some may not know. Edwin Booth saved Abraham Lincolns son's life a year before his brother took Lincolns life. Robert Todd fell on some tracks as a train was pulling in and Edwin reached down and grabbed him by the collar saving his life.

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The Donald.  Seems Donald is REALLY REALLY unpopular with independent voters and Democrat's and his average favorability among the GOP keeps sinking.

On the other side Bernie's popularity keeps moving up.

Head to Head polls have absolutely zero predictive power at this point.
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Watching the stock market sink - I'm glad my father in law has his $$ in MG&E which has been making money the last few weeks!

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Oil - we are in site of sub $20 a barrel.  There  are already 5 oil producers under $20 a barrel.

Nuff said for today.