I was a little surprised when I learned that one of the agenda items for a recent Mount Carroll City Council meeting was a request that the city was considering taking over the debt of the downtown CDC (MCEDG) Kraft building. (CDC is Community Development Corporation and MCEDG is Mount Carroll Economic Development Group.)
Many questions popped into my mind. I have learned that asking questions is a great way to gain knowledge of any subject matter. Asking questions of our leaders and people of authority is a great way to hold them accountable. So, here are a few questions that I have that pertain to the CDC (MCEDG) Kraft building.
Why would the city take over that debt? How much debt are we talking about? How much money did the city loan the CDC (MCEDG) in previous years to assist in its rehab? What would the building be used for? Surely, it won't be a community center since we have one being planned with the Davis Trust money, and we have the Community House on Main Street.
Why is the CDC (MCEDG) requesting debt relief? What does the CDC (MCEDG) even do any more? Is it even a viable non-profit organization any more? Why doesn't the CDC (MCEDG) market and sell the building? By the way, marketing is not just putting a sign in the window. Why would I want my tax dollars to go to pay for another building?
So many questions, questions I think we should all be asking. The typical scenario in the private sector would be that the building would enter into foreclosure. The bank or lending institution would eventually put the building on the market for sale and try to recoup its monies.
Many businesses have fallen on hard times with no bailout by the city. I am concerned that our city leaders have already decided on what they want to do. We should all be asking questions!