I just read about the 2.10 cent per 100 property tax increase and the reevaluation of property to a higher value to raise even more. Also, I read of plans to increase more in future to SOLELY fund the debt associated with bonds. Then later in the article a 3.75 percent water and sewer increase too.

The Trillium bond issue is one thing as it creates jobs and money for the area but the unneeded Riverwalk and City Walk is a waste of money that isn't going to do anything to help the local economy. Nobody is going to move to Hickory because of City Walk or Riverwalk; I don't care what they tell you.

Notice the areas where they are being built around the affluent who are the only ones who turned out to vote for these pet projects. They need to use the money to pave roads like the crater-filled road in front of Corinth Church or Geitner Road which is also terrible. The only reason Hwy. 127 is being paved is because it's a state road.

Hickory continues to widen the gap between the rich and poor and ignore the real problems such as the drug epidemic with heroin and methamphetamine along with prescription opiates that are devastating our area. An increase in police and some drug treatment programs would be way better use of some bond money. Everyone needs to go online and look at who's in jail Catawba County and look at the real situation that is happening around you.

While a Riverwalk or City Walk would be nice, there are many, many, many, many way more important ways to improve Hickory than these wastes of money that everyone has to pay for whether they like it or not. Walking along the river etc. sounds like a good place to get robbed or watch some people shoot up heroin and steal your car while you’re walking.

This area first lost textiles, then furniture and then watched fiber optic demand dwindle. This manufacturing city and its people were and continue to struggle to find decent-paying jobs. If the grass quit growing tomorrow in Hickory the unemployment rate would be 40 percent, think about it. This is my opinion and I just feel better getting this off my mind.

Phillip Sipe

Hickory, NC

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