Over the Labor Day weekend, thousands of copies of an eight-page tabloid will be distributed around Lancaster, chiefly near the Central Market, downtown during First Friday, and outside Clipper Stadium.
Its headline: “The Final Chapter in the Convention Center Series: Betrayals of Public Trust”. The material is the fiftieth installment in a series concerning the Convention Center Project appearing at www.NewsLanc.com.
Despite review after review of the text, it was discovered only after printing that the title over the seventh page graphics reads “Estimated vs. Actual Costs of the Convention Center” The word “Project” was unintentionally omitted at the end of the title. It should read Estimated vs. Actual Costs of the Convention Center Project since the costs included both the convention center and the Marriott Hotel.
We apologize for the oversight.
Because of the vastness and complexity of the series, the periodic availability of both paid and volunteered authors, and other concerns, it was decided to publish the series in virtual ‘draft’ form with the intention, time and resources becoming available, to later condense, supplement and polish a book version. A later draft is in the works and revised chapters will be substituted as they become available.
As stated in the tabloid’s introduction, “…local circumstances have in general changed for the better.” Nevertheless, the after effects of this disreputable episode in Lancaster’s history have been and continue to be felt, most recently with the need of the Convention Center Authority to borrow funds to cover its debt service and to accede to the refinancing requirements of the bond guarantor. Not only have other opportunities for needed public undertakings been lost due to the concentration of tax dollars in this questionable downtown project, but it may soon be necessary for the county commissioners to increase the hotel room sales tax to cover deficits, which will further hobble the county’s former flourishing tourist industry.
Although the problems of greed and special interests may be far worse elsewhere, nevertheless we must have the courage to speak out here in Lancaster to preserve and, where need be, to restore the integrity of our institutions and a civil society.