To the editor:
During my two campaigns for City Commission I was labeled anti-growth. I was not and am not now against growth. I was concerned, and still am concerned, about how growth was promoted, managed and maintained. Who was and still is paying and who is getting the most benefits from the growth?
My concerns have grown about the cost of growth to the danger point. It appears that we have promoted and spent money on new growth and neglected to maintain what we had.
The Feb. 17 Journal-World article, "Sewer problems putting people out of work, builders say," confirms my concern.
As I stated in a letter to the editor back in 1993, we do, or did, need outlying development as Lawrence and outer areas grew; but the traffic and building congestion with bridges, roads and other infrastructure should have been planned before development boxed us in.
We have enjoyed the benefits of the new construction, but we now see what happens when we spend too much on new growth at the expense of maintaining the old roots!
It is easy to obtain growth by going into debt, but it is now apparent that we cannot sustain that growth if we use all the revenue on new growth and do not save some for maintenance.
As the editor said, it is time to decide our priorities, not what we desire, but what we need and can afford.
G. Wayne Parks,