Forget your potholes – Tucson City Council donates $1 million to Catholic Church – UPDATE Mayor respondsFriday, July 27th, 2012
Please see Mayor’s response below
I’ve lived in a lot of places (like Boston) where the power of the church causes corruption,
but I have never seen a more blatant scam than the recent vote by our City Council to
donate 1.1 Million dollars to the church for the “repair” of Marist College.
The council voted 5-2 Tuesday night to allocate federal Community Development Block Grant funds to repair the historic building’s damaged support structure and veneer. The city’s hope is that a developer will eventually come forward and transform the one-time parochial school, built in 1915, into an economically viable property.
It is even personally upsetting in that I have been a long time supporter of Regina Romero, who pushed this effort,
and the only voice of sanity I find on the council is a Repub, Steve Kozachik
Councilman Steve Kozachik said he voted against the measure because the block-grant money would be better spent on housing rehabilitation, neighborhood enhancements and other issues where the city has a waiting list of residents who could benefit. “But instead we are going to give a gift to the Catholic Church,” he said.
It isn’t as if the Church doesn’t have the money to repair its own property – they’ve already spent almost that amount in out-of-state donations to campaigns to fight gay rights and contraception.
I’m calling the ACLU – the city will have another lawsuit on its hands if I can do anything about it.
———— UPDATE – Mayor’s Response —————————-
Patrick, thanks for your e-mail. I appreciate your feelings due to a lack of detailed reporting regarding this matter. The proposal which has been made to the Diocese to save this building which is on the National Historic Registry includes stipulations that the Church is to have no financial interest or gain from the building, that the City may take title to the Building if it desires, that the building will be put to partial public purpose and that the Church may have no interest in future use of which the City has full control. In fact the Proposal from the City takes the property out of Church control and puts it to an entirely new use. The alternative is to lose a Historic Building of National concern for a Diocese parking lot. Hope that helps you understand the proposal which has not yet been accepted by the Diocese. Thanks.
My reaction to this is that I don’t understand why the City would take title “if desired”, and not simply take title. Or why it would be put to PARTIAL public purpose, and not entierly ?
It is still not satisfactory – the city should not be donating money to the Church – even “partially”.