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I support the recent decision by county council to accept the White Rock Downtown Master Plan. White Rock needs a downtown plaza area to serve as a focal point for private investment encompassing retail stores, restaurants and more affordable housing options for the citizens of White Rock and Los Alamos County in general. We need to act to diversify our local economy and promote our county as a gateway to nature. I commend the steering committee for the great deal of work that it has done developing this plan, which would create favorable conditions for renewed private investment in White Rock and help brand Los Alamos County as a premier destination for outdoor activities. Furthermore, the work of the steering committee is an excellent example of concerned citizens doing their part to help improve our community.
Having a plan is a good first step but this alone is not enough. As a county, we have already committed resources towards economic development on the Hill. The need for economic development in White Rock is greater. The homeowners of White Rock deserve their fair share of county resources for economic development. We can implement the White Rock Downtown Master Plan if we hold the line with regards to the budgets of our other capital projects and prioritize county spending. We don’t need to do everything all at once and we can accomplish our goals as a county while living within our means.
The highest priorities for county spending in the near future should be economic development both on the Hill and in White Rock, and helping our schools with their infrastructure revitalization by lowering the county’s share of property taxes.