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GUNS VS. BUTTER (now or later)

From: domainremoved <Jim>
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 2020 00:46:03 +0000 (UTC)

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Honorable Mayor and Council Members:

Life is full of choices.

Currently before you is a proposal for $40,000,000 or so to REBUILD an existing Onetta Harris Community Center. This is certainly commendable, when viewed in an isolated way for a project in and of itself. However, the Onetta Harris Community Center already exists, with a desire to bring it UP-TO-DATE. It should serve the community well for years to come, once completed.

Another approx. $40,000,000 project is the City of Menlo Park's EMERGENCY OPERATIONS CENTER (or commonly known as the EOC), in which the City of Menlo Park in essence, has NONE. Thus, this is an opportunity for you to consider what is more important. Given limited staff time, limited City funds for the swimming pool, furniture and furnishings, etc. versus providing SAFETY in the event of an unexpected emergency, becomes a choice. Are we trading GUNS FOR BUTTER?

Are we trading the need for the POLICE, FIRE, AMBULANCE, HAZ MAT and others to have a command center, modern in every way located within the City, sufficient to address wildfires, pandemics, contaminated water, air and food, EARTHQUAKES, historic levels of windstorms and a host of other issues, such as the potential for TERRORISM, by kicking this can, once again, down the road, while joyously constructing a building to play and socialize? Will history judge the outcome? How often do we chase things that are FUN, vs. spending time on the probability of a community nightmare?

An ACTIVE SHOOTER can spoil your and many other persons day and continuing for a lifetime. Is Menlo Park prepared? Are joint excercises being done? Is there a central communications network ready, willing and able to coordinate essential services? Attention spent in construction on a priority basis for possibly TWO YEARS (2020 - 2021) or more to focus on all the myriad of details of a MULTI-GENERATIONAL CENTER could result in the CITY being wholly unprepared in other ways.

WHAT ELSE will be deferred, put off, delayed, postponed while an existing project gets rebuilt? What might be the true cost, all things considered? It's impossible to do all things at once. Life is full of choices. We pray that you will find the way so this proposed project becomes a win-win situation for all those persons, businesses, visitors and others coming to this wonderful and special place we affectionately refer to as MENLO PARK.

I believe this concern could be part of the CONVERSATION. The big picture should be viewed in navigating the choices. If you agree, the upcoming GOAL SETTING meeting should provide time to go over the TRADE-OFFS, pros and cons, benefits and drawbacks of taking on at this time a project of this magnitude, perhaps one of the largest in Menlo Park's approx. 100 year history (1927 - present).
Received on Tue Jan 28 2020 - 16:49:44 PST

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