I live in the Blackman area and I would support the Bible Park. I understand there are legal issues to comply with and the leaders we've placed in position to do what's best for our communities should do the right thing for the people. Just as they swore before God taking the office and duties, they need to continue seeking God for guidance and be honest with the people in their district. And we don't need a satan park, he already has one based on some of the comments made.
They could put the Satan Park right across the highway from Bible Park..now THAT would be cool!
41 could represent purgatory!
The Blackman community is on a city annexation fast track. Anyone believing, including the county mayor, this park, if built, or anything being built in that area, for that matter, will not be annexed into the city, leaving the county high and dry is simply in denial of the inevitable.
Now, if we were Metro, these tax problems would not exist.
"Due to the unusually large sales tax collections for tourism, residents in Sevier County pay $1.34 per $100 of assessed value for property taxes while residents in Rutherford County pay $2.35, CTAS reported."
Either CTAS or the reporter left out the fact that the cities in Sevier County get a special cut of state sales taxes beyond what any other cities in the state get. It's called the 'Premier Type Tourist Resort distribution', and only they qualify. Other cities get a cut based on population and end up w/far, far less.
That state-shared tax advantage has much more to do w/Sevier County's low property tax rate than their own sales tax collections do.
And here's my general rant about this whole thing:
re "The park will need roads, water and sewer at the site and a tourism zone approval by the state."
A tourism zone? What EXACTLY does that mean? Another boondoggle of private profits financed by taxpayers' dollars? The law on tourist development zones, to date, has been used to finance--with public funds--two convention centers [Chattanoog and Memphis] and a central business district improvement project [Sevierville]. Never a theme park.
It won't work because there's nothing else big to attract tourists and this is too narrowly focused to bring a million of them in. And when it goes belly up, county taxpayers [that's us] will be left holding the bag because the COUNTY Industrial Development Board will OWN the property and the COUNTY government will issue the bonds to buy it, and the COUNTY taxpayers [that's us] will have to pay them back. Annexation won't have a thing to do with that.
If the county owns it--and it will--the property will generate ZERO property tax dollars for the county. And if a tourism zone is approved, whatever sales taxes this thing generates will go to pay the bonds. If we're real, real lucky, it will be a wash, but I still say it will go belly up and the county will be left holding the bag . . . a big bag of debt. The schools will get ZIP, maybe less than zip.
Folks, this is not going to be a good deal. Sometimes we act like beggars, as in beggars can't be choosers. It's pitiful. I hope I'm wrong.
Here's a link to the state tourism development law. http://tennessee.gov/sos/acts/100/pub/PUBC1055.htm