To the Editor:
I am once again left shaking my head, that Lockhart, a “city with a vision” (if one can believe the slogan imprinted on the city’s emblem), continues to elect city council members who HAVE no vision. Case in point – City Council meeting on Feb. 1.
Roy Watson, a citizen of Lockhart as well as a member of an international architectural and design firm, spent an enormous amount of time and effort and thought putting together a presentation of his vision for Lions Park, a presentation endorsed by the Friends of the Brock Cabin. This vision includes renovation of the cabin so that it is structurally sound enough to be a living museum, as well as the construction of an outdoor pavilion that could be used for a variety of purposes: from family reunions to weddings to outdoor educational presentations. These changes to the existing setup would benefit the citizens of Lockhart, as well as enticing new tourists to the area.
Understanding that there is a finite amount of money coming into the city as hotel-motel tax, city council is called upon to allocate those dollars so that all entities meeting the criteria are given a piece of the pie. Instead of acknowledging that the Brock Cabin and the Lions Park venue could indeed be a source of tourism, and that the Friends of the Brock Cabin does indeed meet the criteria, city council pretended that they did not just listen to a presentation with a clear direction and said that there was no clear vision, using that incorrect position to deny the plea for a small percentage of that revenue. Huh?
You may not have noticed this, but Lockhart could really use an influx of new dollars, not to mention new venues for activities beneficial to its citizenry. Lots of areas of town could use a facelift or two. Or three.
It doesn’t matter if you don’t personally appreciate the rich and colorful history of this city: there are lots of other folks who do. Demographics show that most of those folks have the money – and time – to spend exploring cities and towns that embrace the gift of that history. That money could then be used on the things in Lockhart you DO place value on: our children, our senior citizens, our infrastructure… the list goes on.
If supported by this city and its leadership, heritage tourism will increase the total dollars available to all current recipients of hotel/motel tax dollars. Taking a few dollars from some of the larger beneficiaries in the short term would add to those dollars many-fold in the long term.
Events such as Cinco de Mayo and Chisholm Trail celebrations, which happen on weekend each during the year, will surely benefit from tourist money brought in all year long.
I urge the citizens of Lockhart to contact their representatives and ask them to reconsider their positions in this matter.