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City can't afford civic center expansion plan

Where's the money? $180 million plus approximately $220,000,000 interest over 30 years is $400 million. The city has a credit card and no money for a new civic center.

The American Disabilities Act was signed into law in 1990 and amended Jan. 1, 2009. Procrastinating at least 6 years: Just to renovate to be compliant with ADA is $70 million plus interest. Counting on money the city doesn't have is like "gambling." Who is paying for TV, billboards, etc. for a yes vote? Who really benefits? Five former mayors realize it is time to fix the problem, not create more.

 Facts have recently come out that were omitted. Even the plans aren't complete. Risk Management. Drive by The civic center on 5th Street and 8th Street. Do you see a digital reader board that indicates what event is there or coming? Basics in business. "Think"... $400 million and 30 years just so some people can say: "We built it" (not with their money). Yes is debt; no is no.

— Allen McPherson, Rapid City

Vote for civic center plan vote for the future

In its early years, America was considered “The Land of Innovation.” We are a nation not afraid to dream, challenge the impossible or stand up in the face of fear.  Here in Rapid City this is our time to take action. Generations following us will look back on this decision to expand the civic center and thank us, like we thank the foresight from the 1970’s that first built the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center.

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We have two choices: to either change the course of history or be lost in the course of history. The decision isn’t easy, but nothing worthwhile in this world ever is. When the voters of Rapid City go to the ballot on March 10 and “vote yes” for the civic center expansion, they can stand proud knowing they’ve kept our American spirit alive, seized the moment and made a historic impact that will better the lives for generations to come.

— Tyson Steiger, Rapid City

Why give our water to a foreign mining firm?

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I am saddened over some of the sentiment in South Dakota regarding the mining of uranium at the Dewey-Burdock site near Edgemont. Some S.D. citizens despite being fiercely independent seem willing to sell out to a foreign company.

Azarga Uranium, formerly known as Powertech Uranium, is a Canadian company whose major shareholder and continued source of funding is a Chinese investment fund. Azarga/Powertech is seeking state permits for 12.96 million gallons of water per day indefinitely. In 2012 Rapid City used 11.35 million gallons per day. The (foreign) company is applying for water rights for which they will not pay. If Azarga/Powertech were to buy the water from say Rapid City it would have to pay over $1 million for the amount it seeks to use.

Our American water is so very precious, especially the Madison and Inyan Kara aquifers in question here. How patriotic is it to trade our water in perpetuity for a handful of short-term jobs?

— Juli Ames-Curtis, Custer

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