Comments about ‘Jay Evensen: After 19 years, Salt Lake's convention hotel battle is evolving’

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Published: Thursday, Jan. 23 2014 12:00 a.m. MST

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Makid
Kearns, UT

Jay,

The subsidy isn't for the hotel, it is for the meeting space and parking to accommodate that.

One of the main requirements of the Convention Hotel is an additional 100,000 sq ft of public meeting space. This space is generally broken up in pieces with the largest space being between 50,000 and 75,000 sq ft in contiguous size.

I have yet to hear of a single hotel with 100,000 sq ft of meeting space being built anywhere outside of Las Vegas without a subsidy. Let alone, have you or anyone else heard of any hotel built with 100,000 sq ft of meeting space letting the public control that space and not the hotel directly?

That is where the problem comes in. Hotel developers are building as can bee seen just west of the Salt Palace but, they aren't going to build the extra meeting space and give it to the public for free.

What needs to happen is for people to change their terminology. The public isn't subsidizing a hotel, the public is paying for meeting space from increases to the existing tax values not the existing ones. Worst case is revenue neutral.

liberal larry
salt lake City, utah

Jay's editorial is very light on research.

Utah isn't so unique that the experience of other venues isn't relevant to our dilemma. What has been the experience of the cities like Denver that have enough facilities to host the Society of Professional Journalists?

I think a little study might shed a little more light on this subject.

Ultra Bob
Cottonwood Heights, UT

When government subsidies business it is a taxpayer scam. The promises made by developers of benefit to the taxpayers NEVER happen. The government should loan money to developers only when there is a guaranteed payback. Our government should not gambol with taxpayer money.

The loan should be like the mortgage loan of a home buyer and if the collateral for the loan turns bogus the developer should go to prison.

Makid
Kearns, UT

Ultra Bob,

The subsidy from the government is going for the meeting space and parking for said meeting space that will be built by the developer. It isn't going to the hotel directly.

Basically, the developer doesn't build the meeting space and meeting space parking as required, they get no subsidy.

That is the advantage of a post performance subsidy. It requires the completion of all items before the subsidy kicks in. With the Convention Hotel, the meeting space would be required to be built into the design of the hotel. This alone, stops the developer from building the hotel and then asking for more money to then build the meeting space.

Ultra Bob
Cottonwood Heights, UT

Makid

Will the meeting space and the parking be available to the public for use by the general public like any other public park? Would any business be able to use it for their conventions? Would the revenue from its use go to the public account? If not it should not be paid for with public money.

The time for businessmen robbing the taxpayer will end, one way or another. The residents of Salt Lake City should not be ask to finance business ventures.

Makid
Kearns, UT

"Ultra Bob:

Will the meeting space and the parking be available to the public for use by the general public like any other public park? Would any business be able to use it for their conventions? Would the revenue from its use go to the public account?"

The space will be controlled just like the Salt Palace space and South Town Expo Center. You would go about using the space through the same methods.

Revenue from the use of the space and parking would also be funneled to the public accounts the same as revenue is currently going there from the Salt Palace and South Town Expo Center.

This is why I was saying that the public isn't subsidizing the hotel. It is paying for the meeting space via property tax deferments/credits via a post performance rating.

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