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Comments about ‘Despite recession, downtown Salt Lake is rising’

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Published: Saturday, July 25 2009 12:24 a.m. MDT

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Answers for Fredd

1. YES, 2. YES, 3. YES. Any other questions?

Appreciative

As an observer of many years I have seen and read much concerning the investment/development projects the LDS church is involved with. My understading is that these projects do not involve tithing funds. Unlike our government, I appreciate an entity that can keep it's financial house in order. The projects I am aware of range from commercial to agricultural. From what I have seen, their projects are well planned, always beautiful and well cared for. If the development projects of the LDS church were publicly traded, I would be in line to invest.

As for "feeding the flock". Does not the LDS church have one of the best, if not the best welfare system in the world, that not only cares for their own, but also many others throughout the world?

Recent events have made me take thought about what the LDS church does and does not do. I am appreciative of what it is contributing to the city.
Heaven forbid that there should be a beautuful plaza where "standards" make it a place apart from the norm. Could'nt we just have a road there!

To watch man

I'm a business owner ready to start anthor business in utah. I already sold one business in this bad economy and geting ready to start another. I have 100% trust in our leaders, who are closing to the lord than I am, plus a lot smarter in the business world than I am. Watch man what type of busniess back ground do you have? I know we have nothing to worry about. My needs are made. I don't need a big building to pray in.

An Observer

RE: Watchman:

The only watch you have been given is to watch over your given stewardship and to spread the gospel and bring souls to the truth,


God is the Watchman over his Prophet and apostles, and his church,

and if it or they should ever go astray,

it HIS Job and his job alone to take care of it and the church.

NOT yours.

Shoeless Joe

If you build it they will come.

Re; a in la

very very very very very very good point i didnt think about that!

Seattle

I still get a kick out of all of the whining on the Des News sites about the economy down there. Do you realize all of the websites outside of Utah are telling the unemployed if they want to find work to go to SLC? Your 6% unemployment would be a dream for those of us in Washington, Oregon, Michigan, etc.

Be grateful for only 6% unemployment!

Knowah

Thank goodness the City Creek project is not the symbolic equivalent of the "large and spacious mansion." It is more like the symbolic equivalent of the "GIGANTIC AND SPACIOUS MANSION." Just like the meganacle, aka the conference center. The meganacle has to be the most under utilized building for the money in the world!

Re: Fredd

The Church has long maintained a variety of buisness interests. Decades of wise investments in agriculture, ranching, water rights, real estate, interest, parking....

Examples: Cattle ranches in Oklahoma and Florida. Purchased with profits from other commercial ventures. They comprise thousands of acres. Both are maintained as for profit investments. These are operated as buisnesses with paid employees and management. Also serve as youth camps.

I visited the Florida ranch, they control a full 1% of the US beef market. Both ranches also earn substantial income from sportsmen. Florida leases lots for bore hunting. Oklahoma ranch gives $5,000/person guided deer hunts.

Church has long received rent for properties they own. Companies have paid for decades to rent space in their malls. Shoppers pay the Church to park there. Remember that ZCMI (Zion's cooperaive mercantile) was a Church owned buisness which was (fairly) recently sold for millions.

Church has purchased substantial farmland in the Oakley ID area recently. Some purchased with welfare money, harvests supply the welfare program directly. Others are purchased as buisness holdings.

The Church is "exempt", but voluntarily pays taxes on this income.

$2 billion cash from non-tithing sources? Presume billions remain.

More to Watchman

Sorry to pile on, but if you really work for the church, you should know the different legal entities at play and the very different funding structures they fall under.

The COPB (including your dept, from the sound of your comments) is funded from tithing. The City Creek project is a totally separate legal entity and is structured as a for-profit corporation. The closing of the Church College of New Zealand has nothing to do with the City Creek project.

My suggestion: regardless of the implications for your church standing (that's between you and your bishop), you should stop making assumptions where you don't have all the facts - it's just making you look bad.

stop complaining

no matter what the church does you will allways have thoes that critisize have faith .

Eric

I hope we do not consider all decisions of economic, political and social judgment made by leaders of the Church as revelation. Certainly this project is most likely inspired (and I will sustain the Church leaders as such), but this project is subject to failure just as Joseph Smith's Kirtland Safety Society Anti-Banking Company was. Many apostatized as a result of its failure. Let us not, ourselves, declare with ignorant confidence that this City Creek investment will not fail "finacially" because it is inspired, for, should it fail, we could fall prey to the same trap leading to apostasy. Now, with that being said, I am excited about the prospects of the City Creek Center, both economically and for the beautification it will bring to the area around Temple Square.

Me again

Hey watchman, you forgot one big item! This wonderful project has already gone way over budget!

Let's see

Our elected , highly educated, smart, inteligent, wise, and wonderful officials in our government sure know how to spend money and balance a budget! What if this big venture turns sour? Then what's going to be said?

Over budget?

Over budget, or has the original plan been enlarged? Significant variation between the two.

Happy to see that the LDS Church has the resources to maintain the environment around Temple Square. I have noticed along the East Coast of the US that neighborhoods have declined around many historic churchs. They were built in beautiful areas, but 150 years later they are in slums with bars covering the stained glass and inadequate resources to maintain them properly.

I want people to visit Temple Square. I want them to be greated in a clean and modern downtown.

Eric: great example with the early bank.

brejol

So what will heaven be like. Beautiful, one might suppose. But will it be inflicted with self-centered freeloaders complaining that their needs are not being met?

Not lds

I actually work for an LDS church entity and the LDS church owns many other for profit organizations that are run by LDS apostles but their finances are legally structured so that the LDS church operations, Church education services(which is the seminary program and the church colleges) are what tithing goes to pay for. They also own a company called Deseret management corporation. This is a holding company, with completely separate finances the owns Zions Securities(who i believe is the company who will officially own City Creek Center) They also own Bonneville Communications, The Deseret News, and Temple square hospitality. These company are all for profit and they all pay taxes. By law their finances are required to be separate for the churches day to day operations. Please people, I don't even go to church and I can say that i'm 99% positive that they are not using your titing money for commercial ventures.

Grateful

Thanks to all who are investing in our capital city. I don't live in SLC, but I know that a vibrant central city will make every city more prosperous. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Happy to respond

Fredd 2:07

1. Does God's revelation include where to invest money?

A) I feel God has made such revelations to me.
B) It is somewhat presumptuous to define God in a way that would limit His ability to reveal.
C)Remember the Church employs individuals to operate their investments, all decisions do not come directly from the First Presidency. They can fail.

2. If someone bequeaths their estate to the LDS church they are free to use it for profit?

Some form of instruction is typically included in such an arrangement. An estate may be left specifically for the benefit of a department at BYU, the Perpetual Education Fund, or the welfare program. I would presume such estates are a minor source of income for the Church.

3. You are saying if the church invests $100K of tiyhing, earns a million, they are free to take the million for profit investment?

I am saying that the Church would not invest $100K of tithing. Tithing is used for clearly defined expenditures.

More relevant to consider that many of the Church's investments preceed tithing. I presume these would, quite coincidentally, include the very real estate currently being developed.

Ownership of Means of Production

People. Stop this foolish talk. The LDS church is the only charitable organization in the ENTIRE WORLD that owns the means of production. Everybody else uses cash, most of it funneled to them by government entities, to purchase water, food, blankets, dig wells, provide shelders, etc. The LDS church, on the other hand, owns the farms, owns the meat packing, packaging, food prepeartion, and cannery facilities. They have their own distribution arm. From seed to table, the LDS church is the only charity that can do it all without haveing to hire out anything. No one else does it like that because no one else was inpired from on high to do it like that.

Its a great example of self reliance and faith. Its also an example to all of us. What should you do to prepare for the possibility of more economic down turns? Get some land. Buy some chickens. Get a tractor. Learn how to grow, fertilize, and harvest your own produce. Become a self sufficient entity yourself. Or you could just save your US dollars and watch them go up on smoke.

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