Citizen Editorial: Formula For A New Fairgrounds
County has No money to help
Port has No money to help
Not much money is available to help municipalities build New Fairground facilities
Community involvement is mandatory
Needs to be Financially Self sustaining
Needs to be out of political control
Needs to be an arrangement to last for generations.(100 years)
Has to be TRAFFIC accessible
Needs room for growth to accommodate change
Where to Start and how to get there!
Start with the 150 Acres adjacent to the Transfer Station Site and across the street from the Ridge Motors ports facility. On Ells Hill Rd. off hwy 102 (prison Road)
Form a NON PROFIT 501 C-3 organization to manage facility
Board members are to be made of officers of 15 to 20 Local Non-profits. (Rotary,Kiwanis,4-H,Horse clubs, Gardening, Grange, ect.)
When one of their’s is elected to their organizational officer command staff they will be required to be a board/panel member on this panel.
County can add someone from Parks Dept.
County will give lease to organization for a $1 a year for 100 years and option for more.
As a non profit additional money is available that is not available to public entities.
Each entity on board could apply to their respective organizations for funding for there own buildings IE: Kiwanis bldg, Grange Bldg, 4-H bldg, Horsemen Arena, You get the idea. They can ask for assistance within their own organizations and can apply for Federal, State and Private Grants as its own non-profit which the county and port cannot.
Volunteer labor for land clearing, site prep work and building construction would be possible where county or port ownership would not allow. No county no prevailing wage requirement saves a bundle. Once again volunteer labor would be allowed under the law.
All work would still require permits and construction inspections.
When Drag Race track in Seattle relocates there will no longer be enough room to run National and Divisional races. Holding these events at the Ridge works well within the Scope of capabilities of Ridge Motorsports. Things that will be needed are Parking And RV sites. When the drags were held at the airport. Thousands of Dollars were collected for parking on open fields. When attending a National event it is not uncommon to spend $10 for parking per car! Times that by 2000-3000 cars daily on weekends. Most major events run for 5 days. Then there is RV sites at $40 per day times 5 days times say 50 spaces equals $10,000! As a non-profit entity major help could be obtained as potential write off expenses for FREE equipment usage.
Volunteers on donated equipment clear land of brush and trees. Addition rock is needed at Ridge Motorsports. If the contractor moving the rock crushing equipment crushes any rock for our parking facility the expenses can be a write off and they perform a outstanding community service! When not in use the Parking areas could be Soccer fields! Adjacent to Webb Hill Rd. you could allocate 3-4 acres for Walt Austin to build a Motorsports Museum under the same $1 a year non-profit. You then have a facility that should be financially self sufficient, built with Pride by Community members. Will never have the continued problems with the FAA. Will be outside all governmental and political interests. Built BY FOR and OWNED by the people of Mason County!
February 20, 2014
Rahn Redman, Mason County