Ad-Express and Daily Iowegian, Centerville, IA

July 16, 2013

Honey Creek comes 'full circle'


The Daily Iowegian

---- — Dear Editor,

For all who speculated, wondered, assumed and absolutely knew, the Honey Creek saga has come “full circle.”

September 26, 2006 “Iowa Outdoors,” Iowa Department of Natural Resources’ news letter, Editor: Mick Klemesrud states: Quote “The principle financing source for the Honey Creek project is $28 million in bond proceeds that will be paid off over a 30-year period with revenues generated by the resort” — unquote.

January 4, 2008. The Public Interest Institute of Iowa Wesleyan College performed a study of Honey Creek Resort State Park completed by Deborah D. Thorton. In it she states — quote “The private sector for 30 years hasn’t been interested in Honey Creek because of the low return on investment; however citizens, Legislators, and state officials are now building it anyway. Hopefully, if you build it they will come, if they don’t taxpayers will still have $33 million in revenue bonds to pay.” The revenue bonds will need to be paid back from the “Net” proceeds after operating expenses, not the “Gross”; therefore, if the resort doesn’t break even the bond payments will have to come from another source, presumably the state budget. Why should Iowa taxpayers assume the risk?” — unquote.

September 19, 2008-Honey Creek opened to the public - with some state leaders questioning whether the $58 million resort will succeed.

February 25, 2010 — As captioned by Daily Iowegian — payments loom for Honey Creek. Officials are afraid the state run resort won’t be able to make it’s bond payments over the next several years - $700,000-$900,000 each year. Michelle Wilson, executive officer with DNR states: quote — “DNR has used Iowa Value Fund dollars to cover recent bond payments, hoping that $1.5 million proposed for debt service for resort included in governor’s proposed budget will be approved for year 2011. We can’t not make a bond payment. Central Group Inc., a private company out of Minnesota that runs the resort, will eventually help pay the bonds with revenue.” — unquote.

So far three differing individuals, all with speculative ideas on who and what would payoff the bonding.

November 28, 2011 captioned by Daily Iowegian — DNR is backing two companies that were hired to manage Honey Creek; however Chuck Corell, Adm. of DNR’s division of Conservation and Recreation states: Quote — “However, yet we are still requesting that the state’s fiscal 2013 budget include monies to payoff the $33 million bonds.” — unquote.

July 9, 2013 — as captioned in Daily Iowegian — Bill pays off Honey Creek Resort debt. The bill signed by Governor Branstad will appropriate $33 million from the state’s budget surplus to payoff the bonds.

So in the end, who was correct? — Deborah D. Thorton was!What has been witnessed here is governmental control at expense of unwitting taxpayer participants, without even having a vote and it is they that now will absorb the cost of Honey Creek — the taxpayers of Iowa. All for an endeavour that history will prove to be an exercise in futility in terms of economical explosion. This will forever be Honey Creek’s legacy.

Respectfully submitted,

Kathy Cooprider

Centerville

Dear Editor,

In the early days of America, Briton was unwilling for the pioneers of the 13 United States of America to be free. Consider the statement included in our Declaration of Independence written in 1776, “The history of the King of Great Briton is a history of repeated injuries and usurptions, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States.” Included was The Stamp Act which was taxation on Americans to raise funds to help support the British Army stationed in America after 1763. Those early American pioneers were confronted with much adversity in establishing the great nation which America is today.

During the War of 1812, British forces had taken prisoner a physician, Dr. William Beanes and held him aboard a warship in Chesapeak Bay. Francis Scott Key and John Skinner both from Washington, D. C. were given permission by the Secretary of State James Monroe to communicate with the British in an effort to get the doctor released.

The British were preparing to bombard Ft. McHenry which protected the city of Baltimore. The bombardment started on Tuesday, Sept. 13, 1814 and continued all day and all night. When confronted concerning Dr. Beanes, the British agreed they would release him but they continued to hold him and the other Americans until after the battle ended. Toward morning of Sept. 14, it became clear the American forces had withstood the 25 hour bombardment. After sunrise, the British did release the three Americans. And after Francis Scott Key was released and he saw our flag flying, he was inspired to write a poem about what he had seen and heard that night concerning the Star Spangled Banner. The poem was set to the melody of an old military march and became popular immediately. But it wasn’t until March 1931 Congress officially approved the song as our national anthem. As we hear and sing it today, it is hard to realize the circumstances of our National Anthem.

As old glory came into being, born amid the strife of battle, it became the standard around which free people struggled to form this great nation. It is good for we Americans who love our nation and The Star Spangled Banner to review the words of Francis Scott Key’s poem which is our National Anthem.

“The National Anthem”

O say, can you see, by the dawn’s early light,

What so proudly we hail’d at the twilight’s last gleaming? Whose broad stripes and bright stars, thro’ the perilous fight,

O’er the ramparts we watched, were so gallantly streaming?

And the rockets’ red glare, the bombs bursting in air,

Gave proof thro’ the night that our flag was still there.

O say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave

O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

Yours truly

Lawrence Powell

Udell