Is Lewis & Clark looking for another handout from the taxpayers of Sioux Falls?

Looks like Lewis & Clark is trying to hoodwink us again. I would suggest Mr. Larson buy a plane ticket to DC and start talking to them about funding his project. Sioux Falls taxpayers have already coughed up plenty for a project that we will never use to full capacity for decades. I got this update from a South DaCola foot soldier;

Troy Larson gave an update (FF 24:00).  He said that in spite of delegations from three states (SD, IA and MN)  meeting with the Feds, they had made little progress to resolve this. The remaining liability for the 20 members is 194m if the Feds are not forthcoming with what they have promised. Larson said that because of the large amount of pre-payment that the members have already made and the percentage of project completion that it has moved Lewis and Clark from 7th to 2nd on the list (?)  He did make the comment that he didn’t think that this would have much effect.

Councilor Jamison made a comment at the end about “helping out the little guys,” Troy Larson also brought up the “nuclear option“.  I have only heard him mention this one other time and I think that was several years ago when they were discussing Sioux Falls $70m pre-payment.

One of the Councilors did ask about SF’s need for additional water in 2012.  The answer was that we do not need the water, but we are obligated to buy it anyhow, something to the tune of $2m for next year alone! No wonder those “user fee/taxes” had to go up so much.

This was something that Cotter did confess to me and group who met with him earlier in the year. I seemed confused by this. Why spend $80 million for a pipeline we will only use if we need to? He did tell us it was ‘more expensive’ to use Lewis and Clark and that is why it will be for backup only.

I hope the city treads lightly this time when it comes to Lewis & Clark. We have already bought the farm on this deal, we don’t need a second plantation.


#1 rufusx on 11.30.11 at 11:54 am

Heard a presentation on this about three months ago. The “nuclear option” is the clause in the contract that each and every one of the member communities signed that guarantees that the project will be fully funded – and constructed – whether the Feds pay their share or not. Every member community is fully aware of this contractual obligation – and has been from the start.

It includes a 50-year bond sale that (in the case of my little member community) would amount to an annual payment of around $20K for those 50 years). It works out to around $8-10/year per person. – and if population grwoth among the member communities continues at the rate we’ve experienced over the past 50 years – it ill easily e half that much per person in 25 years. Throw in inflation and we’re talking the equivalent of a buck or two a year per person in today’s terms.

Sometimes it’s helpful to gain a better perspective on those big huge scary $$$ MM numbers by personalizing and amortizing them.

#2 Scott on 11.30.11 at 12:49 pm

But you can take any “cost” and play that game. The problem is that this $8-10 per person plus the unneeded MacArena cost plus every other pet project plus the daily cost of doing gov’t biz adds up to more than each of us should pay.

#3 rufusx on 11.30.11 at 4:26 pm

Yeah -because 75-cents a month is just too too much to handle.

#4 Scott on 11.30.11 at 4:54 pm

Seriously? So every time the city, state, or feds come up with a new program they should just throw up this “it will only cost each person xxx cents per year”. Let’s pave downtown with gold! I bet that will only cost each of us ten bucks!

#5 l3wis on 11.30.11 at 9:51 pm

I’m not naive, obviously taxpayers will have to cough up to save this project, but let’s be realistic here. It is about time my federal taxes go to paying for this instead of endless wars overseas for oil and treasure. This is a perfect project for Federal dollars.

#6 John2 on 12.01.11 at 10:02 pm

Yeah, spend it so you can pour one-half of it on the ground.

#7 l3wis on 12.02.11 at 10:58 pm