I have noticed that the Free Press publisher John A. Brake is; to put it mildly; every concerned about the possibility that the Riley County Commission will put in place a Public Building Commission. The Commission members will most likely be the three County Commissioners. They may or may not have an advisory board. If they do have an advisory board it will not make any final determinations, as the power rest with the PBC.
The Free Press seems to make a leap of faith that the city supports the PBC idea because the County could use the PCB to fund the Field House Project. That conclusion is inferred due to the fact that the proposed Bylaws for the PBC excluded projects of a USD, University and College. It did not exclude City Projects. The Free Press also makes the case that the PBC idea is being pushed in order to go around the voters so that the County Commission can build what it wants without voter approval.
I have followed the CVB discussion and I believe the main reason the County is pushing for the change is to speed up process. That has some merit in regards to the Court Building. One of the plans kicked around at Joint Meetings was to provide court security and consolidate the Municipal and County Court into one building. That consolidation has merit. The PBC could speed that process. Because the court building consolidation involves the city court, it seems to make sense to not exclude the PBC from having the authority to approve financing projects that involve city. I have always assumed that the City was not excluded primarily due to the Court plans and possible collaboration on Parking issues.
I would like to see the Court Security Plan, Court House Consolidation and collaboration on Parking completed. I get the fact that the PBC could help in those areas. The question is does the idea or concept have more negative than positive implications? I find the inference in the Free Press on the use of a projected PBC to finance the Field House concept to be very troubling. I did not expect the PBC idea to involve the Field House. I do not believe the three County Commissioners have made a final determination on the PBC. Is it a positive or negative thing? Should they approve the PBC or not?