MARY HAW: Hopes compromise can be reaches on senior project

TO THE EDITOR:

It was with disappointment that I read the Manistee City Council did not pass the new Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILOT) request from Third Coast Development for the Senior Village project.

With some compromise from both parties, I believe it can still work. My thoughts:

  • The apartments with a view of the river should not be subsidized; an increased rent for apartments with a view of the water would be appropriate;
  • A fair market rent should be appropriated for the remaining units;
  • Amend the PILOT time frame from 45 years to 20 (45 years is a bit much to sign on for).

It would be very informative if numbers were presented that showed what the city would receive with, and without, the PILOT and any annual increases that would or could be applied. Also compare this with what the city now gets for the vacated property.

The current Manistee Senior Center is busting at the seams. Manistee County and the city will continue to see an influx of seniors. Manistee and Manistee County is a relatively inexpensive place to live compared to points north and south of us. Add to this, the lack of breadwinner jobs whereby many people leave in their 20s and return in their 50s and 60s to downsize and enjoy a reasonable retirement bringing their assets from somewhere else, a situation which has not changed in more than 45 years.

We still need to provide services for our locals and others. These services come at a price and cannot be subsidized away.

Let’s work on a compromise and crunch the numbers to achieve the much needed Senior Village project! This is too important to let it be defeated.

Mary Haw

Manistee

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