Developers’ ‘donations’ can have benefits for the community

I’d like to call this letter "Food for Thought" for all of our political friends, cronies, parties or whatever you want to be called.

News flash, a developer in Union wanted to build a major shopping center. This was a national chain center including Home Depot, Wal-Mart, T.J. Maxx and others.

The developer was "asked" to donate to the town a police pistol range, a new dog pound, a city garage. Guess what? The Union P.D. has a new range. Animal control has a new building. Cost to taxpayers: $0.

In Basking Ridge, a developer wanted to build a major shopping center, including a large food chain (A&P), strip mall and individual stores. This center was built, known as Dewey Meadows. The mall includes a state-of-the-art lighted soccer field with bathroom and snack bar, all "donated" by the developer. Cost to taxpayers: $0.

In Florida, all around the Disney World parks there are Pop Warner fields, Little League fields, soccer fields with bathrooms and snack bars completely paid for by Disney.

Is it really true that Great Adventure is not taxed to potential because the buildings are not permanent structures? I think if it has been standing in one spot for let’s say 20 years, it’s about as permanent as you get.

Wake up, city government! What’s going on? Are we asking the right people the right questions? Are we taking "donations" for ourselves. If the developer saves a few bucks, do we send someone on vacation?

Something really stinks in Jackson and it’s not from the horses.

Andy Felder