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Letter to the editor: JSDC should use its money wisely, according to bylaws

Wow, here we go again, moving away from primary sector and good jobs creation.

This proposed project of bringing in a big box store is wrong in so many ways. It’s not primary sector.

The use of Jamestown/Stutsman Development Corp. funds runs counter to the bylaws of the JSDC. The JSDC has three industrial parks now that have gaps in them and need to be filled. This use of $5.3 million will greatly inhibit the JSDC’s ability to fill these parks and fund other primary sector companies/good paying jobs. Does the JSDC really have that much money to buy land?

If a big box store (the rumor is Menard’s) finds the area so attractive, won’t they come here without a lot of incentives or at least incentives that don’t limit the JSDC’s ability to function as a primary sector funder/jobs creator? Also, if the developer is so positive about the prospects of southwest Jamestown, why does he or she not fund the purchase of land themselves? Maybe that is not in the agreement between the developer and the city. Finally, this big box store will bring mostly low-paying jobs to the community. Is this really something the JSDC wants?

Of course, I would love to see retail growth in the community and the thrill of a big box store. But, this is the wrong approach to accomplish this goal. If you build it — primary sector and good paying jobs — they will come. It’s a natural progression. Use your money wisely my friends.

(Schweitzer is the past president of the Jamestown/Stutsman Development Corp.)