Is it government's job to help provide a "space to create" for would-be entrepreneurs? That was a topic at the Paonia Town Council meeting on Feb. 14. The Boettcher Foundation and other entities are asking the Town of Paonia to apply for the "space to create" program and if selected, commit $35,000 of taxpayers' money to help do a feasibility study for their town. This is suppose to help the economy by providing "affordable" housing for budding artists.
I have no problem with "space to create" if done with 100 percent private money. The Declaration of Independence says to secure our inalienable rights, governments are instituted among men. Government's duties are also to provide necessary infrastructure and law enforcement -- not "affordable" housing for businesses.
The free enterprise system has been proven to take care of the economy as long as government gets out of the way. Delta County isn't a wealthy county but is that so bad? Most of us live here because we like the way of life, clean air and water. It seems many of the new North Fork Valley residents moved here for the same reason but now seem to be set on changing the town into something like Carbondale so they can be "proud of Paonia."
I like it the way it is. A pothole or crack in a sidewalk doesn't make a town. Its people do. If the economy of the valley grows on its own, so be it but it's not government's job to provide "affordable" housing for artists to create art, manufacturers to create widgits, bakers to create baked goods etc., that's for private enterprise to do. $35,000 would go a long way to fixing sidewalks or providing new pipe for an old water system.
Let's let ALL businesses provide their own "space to create" and use taxpayer money for what it was intended for.