Parties involved in the downtown Frederick hotel and conference center project see funding in the state’s fiscal 2017 capital budget as cause for celebration.

But without confirmation that Gov. Larry Hogan will put the remaining necessary money in future fiscal budgets, the project may be delayed.

Maryland lawmakers added $1 million in grant funding for the project to the state’s fiscal 2017 capital budget last week. The capital budget is among a host of bills Hogan has said he will let become law without his signature, The Frederick News-Post has reported.

Lawmakers also gave pre-authorization for project funding in the next two state budgets — $7.5 million each for fiscal 2018 and 2019 — but there is no guarantee the governor will include that money.

Pete Plamondon Jr., vice president of Plamondon Hospitality Partners, the project’s private developer, wants more than just a possibility of pre-authorized funds.

“At some point in the very near future, we’re going to need commitment for the full amount,” he said in a phone interview on Wednesday.

Without a written agreement in the next few months confirming the remaining $15 million of state funding, the 2018 completion date will likely be pushed back, he said.

Asked for the governor’s reaction to Plamondon’s thinking, Hannah Marr, deputy press secretary for Hogan, wrote in an email Wednesday that the governor’s office has not received any correspondence from the developer requesting this agreement.

The nearly $70 million project relies on a combination of public and private funding. About $44 million of that cost will be paid by the developer of the attached full-service hotel. The rest would be a combination of city, county and state funding.

Prior to the start of the 2016 General Assembly, project partners planned to secure state funding through a Maryland Stadium Authority bond bill. The $1 million included in the fiscal 2017 capital budget was a workaround developed after the bond bill never reached a vote in House and Senate committees.

State funding was also requested in fiscal 2016. The $40.8 billion budget approved did not include even a part of the $15 million requested, putting certain project components on hold.

Even when faced with further delays, Plamondon said, his company was still committed to seeing the project through.

Asked if the potential for more delays could hurt any of the project components, Plamondon replied: “Absolutely not.”

“I am not deterred at all by a delay,” he said. “We still have a project to do and work to be done.”

The $1 million in the fiscal 2017 capital budget is intended to support planning costs associated with the project. Additional funding is also not needed to proceed with necessary city and state approvals on design, historic preservation and archaeological reviews related to the project site.

Kara Norman, executive director of the Downtown Frederick Partnership and point person on several of these applications, called the capital budget grant an exciting milestone for the project.

“While things may not have gone as planned, I think there is a lot to celebrate,” she said.

In an email on Wednesday, Mayor Randy McClement indicated a similar celebratory tone.

“We are thrilled that the state recognizes this project as an important economic development game changer for the city of Frederick and beyond,” he wrote.

Though the pre-authorization doesn’t guarantee the rest of the state funding, it does indicate some level of commitment, according to John Fieseler, executive director of the Tourism Council of Frederick County.

“There’s a pretty solid track record that when the state contributes to the design of the project, they follow through with contributions to the construction of the project,” Fieseler said.

Elizabeth Cromwell, executive director of the Frederick County Chamber of Commerce, agreed.

“From our perspective, I don’t think it changes our support,” she said.

The Maryland Stadium Authority and city and county elected officials must sign a memorandum of understanding outlining terms and financing for the project before any state money can be spent. Norman said the terms of this agreement will be critical to ensure the project moves forward.

Project plans call for a 200-room hotel with 24,000 square feet of conference center space with on-site parking, infrastructure improvements and a sixth city parking deck at the site of the old Frederick News-Post building.

The property at 200 and 212 E. Patrick St. is currently owned by a business entity formed by members of the Randall family. The Randall family also owns the parent company of The News-Post.

Follow Nancy Lavin on Twitter: @NancyKLavin.

Nancy Lavin covers social services, demographics and religion for The Frederick News-Post.

(83) comments

MAVRICKinc7

To Burgessdr's April 7, 2013, 8:17 PM COMMENT.

Pulled up the August 1, 2013 BOS meeting coverage. The conclusion drawn then about the hotel and convention center, by the public, 59.2% said NO to this project?

Here we are, 2 and a half years later and the answer is still NO to this project. Read the COMMENT section on this 2013 article and you'll see most comment contributers to this, much like TODAY, are still saying NO to this project or justification for its construction.

What I don't know about is the City, County and State's scheme to perpetruate public funding for this hotel and conference center.

If you are going to use public records to support your postured position, you might want to rethink what your resources were all about, back to 2002 to current time. The public has been saying NO for the last 2 DECADES, IF you were to read public comments, You would know the answer is still NO even if the lastest vote was 4-3-1 and attached to the budget at the last minute and included in this fire sale political strategy put together by the likes of Karen and Ron Young and their sidekick Krimm.

You made your point, but what should the public get back for this scheme in return, other than a debt service strategy 20 years in advance of paying off the Bonds, which necessarily translate to higher property taxes on every dollar SPENT from GO Bond resources sold by the City of Frederick to the usual characters who planned, designed and signed off on to this project and the terms and conditions of finance strategies the Randall family have worked up to sell off their properties at wholesale prices and tax payer dollars.

Am I any less credible than yourself, who wants and needs something the PUBLIC have not been informed of, over the last 2 decades that are now being made more complicated than they need be? Or is NO somethingyou can't bring yourself to accept?

Burgessdr

Your are truly a piece of work. I didn't realize that FNP comments section was how government operated. You are a terribly confused person.

shiftless88

Burgess, was the taxpayer funding always part of the discussions? That seems to be the main point and I believe the introduction of a TIF is recent (I may be incorrect). However, no one has told me why public funding MUST be used. It can be, sure, but MUST it be? Is this impossible without public funding?

Burgessdr

Public funding through Revenue bonds and TIF bonds was always part of the equation for the last TWO decades.

KellyAlzan

Wrong. Not correct

Burgessdr

KellyAlzal, your ignorance of the two decades of discussion of the Downtown Hotel and Conference Center is just stupefying.


In 1996 (TWO DECADES AGO), the City of Frederick commissioned a study by ZHA, Inc. regarding on the development feasibility of 8 city-owned sites (Sites A-H). The ZHA development program called for a 180-room hotel/conference.


In 2001 (15 YEARS AGO), the City of Frederick commissioned a study by Design Collective to prepare a master plan for the East Street Extension Phase I area. In that master plan, it said "The Study Area may be a good site for development of a conference center facility. As a multi-purpose facility less reliant on hotel capacity, it would have a role that suggests public investment in its construction."


In 2006 (ONE DECADE AGO), the City of Frederick commissioned a "Retail Market Analysis" study by BBP Associates. In that study, they recommended a luxury downtown hotel because "the planning region lodging market lacks upscale hotel rooms" and the need to capture the "demand for business travel and corporate events".


In 2010 (SIX YEARS AGO), the City of Frederick commisioned a Downtown Hotel and Conference Center Feasibility Study by Pinnacle. The study said "Although the proposed upscale full-service hotel Downtown will be a successful operating entity, the high costs of construction will likely prevent the hotel from being feasible to a potential hotel developer without assistance. As such, we believe that additional sources of funds would need to be generated in the form of deferred loans (from city, county, and/or state), TIF, local investors, land, parking, grants, etc.


Where have you been the last TWO DECADES, while a Downtown Hotel and Conference Center has been discussed, including the need for public financing?

KellyAlzan

Your copy and paste from 1996 only mentions a feasibility study. No mention of TIFs.

Please pause before scrambling to respond and set people straight

Burgessdr

No copy and paste. I actually read the reports. And you? Just making terribly uninformed comments

KellyAlzan

This seems way more complicated than need be.

I too was wondering if this project will move on without the full amount. And reading this article - Plamandoon has the same reservations as I.

A simple fix would be to simply find an investor that has their own funds or their own source of funding.

There are plenty of investors that don't need a govt subsidy.

Why are we so hellbent on the plamandoons?? Did Peter promise Ron young free friend chicken for life?

DickD

No one has mentioned that Frederick County refused to give Bechtel a tax break and they left the County with thousands of jobs, people moving out and lost wages, which would have been taxed. Now they want to make us think this is a good deal. Bah- Humbug!

BlueDawn666

Yep ....we seemed to have forgotten this:
In addition to Virginia, Bechtel scouted locations in Texas and Arizona. Charlene Wheeless, Bechtel spokeswoman, said the firm is in the final stages of nailing down a Reston location for the 700 employees who will move from Frederick.

Its corporate operations and its Nuclear, Security & Environmental unit are headquartered at 12011 Sunset Hill Road in Reston.



The Bechtel announcement comes three days after Bethesda-based Marriott International revealed its plans to leave its existing, 900,000-square-foot headquarters, kicking off what is likely to be a heated competition between Maryland and Virginia for the hospitality giant. Unleashing the Bechtel move now may be a coincidence, but it's one Marriott will certainly notice.
http://www.bizjournals.com/washington/breaking_ground/2015/03/exit-maryland-bechtel-finalizes-its-move-to.html

DickD

The ones I know have already moved.

cyntiast

Holiday Inn is expanding to become a large conference center. Why is this not sufficient for Frederick?

DickD

Nobody has ever said it is not sufficient, just that they want the hotel downtown Frederick and it has to be at the site of the old Frederick News location, nothing else will do. What does that tell you? And only the Plamondons can supply the hotel. If we are going to use tax money, we should at least put it out for bid.

DickD

The online version of this article is different from the printed hard copy. The printed hard copy stated it is critical to have a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on how the money will be spent. Peter Plamondon was quoted; “At some point in the very near future, we’re going to need commitment for the full amount,” Kara Norman states that must be done in the next few months. (Kara is the Ex. Dir. of the Downtown Partnership.)

The Maryland Stadium Authority, City and County officials must sign a memorandum of understanding, along with City and County officials. outlying the terms and financing before any state money can be spent.

No doubt the City will sign off and most likely the Maryland Stadium Authority has been compromised by Ron and Karen Young We know Jan is for it, but where does the Council sit on this boondoggle? Get to your rep now and state you do not want it approved.

The other "fly in the ointment is without confirmation that Gov.. Larry Hogan will put the remaining necessary money in future fiscal budgets, the project may be delayed.

An although the llawmakers also gave pre-authorization for project funding in the next two state budgets — $7.5 million each for fiscal 2018 and 2019 — but there is no guarantee the governor will include that money.

Pete Plamondon Jr., vice president of Plamondon Hospitality Partners, the project’s private developer, wants more than just a possibility of pre-authorized funds.

MAVRICKinc7

Nicely done, by connecting the dots and noting the PUBLIC plays no role in these current PROJECT decisions, even if by OPINION. We still need more transparency in our government but TRANSPARENCY has turned into nothing more than a word politicians use to buffer their public image as being nothing more than puppets and pawns and their quest and strategies for reelection or fodder for their next promotion.

jerseygrl42

Yet another front page story in this paper owned by one of the two families that will most benefit from this boondoggle; The Randalls...and the story while stating there will be a parking deck , leaves out the cost to the taxpayers of it...the total hit to the taxpayers is a tad under $40 MILLION so that Randal can unload a tainted property loaded with arsenic and which will have to be abated prior to building on the site so says the MDE and the Plamondons' who get the profits while the taxpayers foot the bill...if it were a non affiliated republican family doing this to the taxpayers there would be outrage on the front page and rightly so......hypocritical to say the least , this is truly shameful, especially in light of the trailer park school situation in the southern part of the county and the parking lot aka I-270 that the working folks have to contend with ...$40 MILLION , but two families are smiling

elymus43

This helps a few people, and hurts the taxpayers. There should be no tax incentives for any business to come to Maryland or Frederick. The average person should ask themselves is how is going to help me.

Frayou

What upsets me about this is is local politians & government leaders have spent much efforts pumping up the benefits of restoration of down town. They have been doing this since the Agnes flooding, condemnations of properties and building of the great canal which is to prevent duplication effects of another 100 year flood. (Which will likely not occur in our lifetime and remains to be seen whether it works). Official have condemmed properties under the premise of downtown restoration. This has resulted in the relocation of lower income populations Rebuilding of more affluent & upper income population as well as increasing property values and taxes downtown. This has been the occurring since the canal was completed whose areas sat idle for about 20 years before some progress was seen which has escalated in the past 20 years to the current. All this was being done at the expense of allowing box communities being built on each side of the former Golden Mile which eventually contributed to the influx of lower income populations to those box communities and the exiting of retailers from the old Mall and its ultimate closure. It would appear our Local politians & government leaders have ignored the deterioration of this area at the expense of the so called downtown restoration efforts. The irony is, politians & government leaders are now questioning what needs to be done to restore the golden mile areas, whose past property planning for the area led to it demise. All at the tax payers expense. Both pasts and current.

gary4books

Urban living and walking to work is a trend now and towns that go with it are doing very well. Visiting other towns and touring on foot is also very popular and can be extended by staying over night.

KellyAlzan

May be a trend elsewheres, but unless you're an attorney - the only jobs downtown are $13 per hr jobs.

Frayou

Which revisits the question. What is the big attraction about downtown? My wife and I use to visit downtown shops when our two daughters were young, visited a few Restruants only to find them somewhat out of the price range for a middle American family? Which somewhat reinforces the notion of our government leaders catering to the upper class, providing services for same as well as reinforcing the tax base which I'm not sure is s smart tragedy if as suspected.

DickD

Some don't pay $13. Frederick wages are much lower than elsewhere.

Burgessdr

You again are so terribly uninformed. The Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation says there are 35,000 jobs in Frederick City with an average wage of $47,000 per year.

MAVRICKinc7

What are you selling; an unproven concept or just more stale propaganda that requires we keep our mouths shut, eyes closed, ears filled with FEELINGS, more SPECULATION and consensus by DEFAULT? We can stay overnite just off I-270 or I-70 by by turning east or west, without having to navigate downtown Frederick City and its own traffic patterns. You're out of Worman's Mill. So what do you think is going to become of US 15 north, Monocacy Blvd, Rt 26 and 94? Or has that money already been allocated and no longer part of the cost of our future tax payer debt?

Frederick City will have to make up for 50 years of neglected poperties that now serve as open sewers and a community blighted run down shacks that appears to be growing, all for the sake of preserving 50 years of rot that the wealthy can not remedy other than by slight of hand that only benifits themselves, while using tax payer welfare bond referendums to add to our growing indebtedness and a road that goes no where, with many a pothole still to be filled with more politically funded bandages that lead us closer down to the rabbit hole. Where would you have us go where walking to work, playing and living comes as a PACKAGE deal?

richardlyons

and the rich get richer......at taxpayer expense. So what else is new?

jthompson

The two FNP related properties at 200 & 212 East Patrick Street haven't changed hands in an arm's length transaction for a long time. Hence, there is likely a huge capital gains tax liability on any sale of the properties. However, they will probably avoid capital gains taxation. Ordinarily there is no capital gains tax when the owner sells "under threat of condemnation". Behind the scenes, the property owners will induce the City to threaten to condemn the properties via eminent domain, thereby avoiding capital gains taxation on the sale.

BlueDawn666

So could they use contaminated land as a reason to condemn the property?

KellyAlzan

Contaminated is moot.

You excavate the contaminated soil (if found to be necessary), haul it away. Done.

BlueDawn666

That wasn't my question....

KellyAlzan

Contaminated is not anything of concern for the developer or the city. It's moot. The only ones concerned are the people in opposition grasping at straws.

jthompson

No. Governmental entities may obtain property provided: 1) the owner receives fair market value for the condemned property (as determined by agreement or a jury); and 2) the government needs to property for a public purpose. While the courts still enforce the fair value requirement, the courts defer to the government as to whether there is a public purpose. While the extent of any contamination would affect the properties' fair market value, contamination alone would otherwise be a factor.

BlueDawn666

Gotcha...thank you

bosco

Ron Young was on WHAG news last evening stating that "the majority of citizens wanted it". When was that vote? I must have missed it.

rbtdt5

I think most do.

gary4books

So do I.

KellyAlzan

I think most do not.

richardlyons

Majority of which citizens; Maryland no. They don't no or care. Frederick county absolutely no/ Frederick City perhaps, but as no poll has been taken, nor has it been put to referendum, we do not know. Sen. Young is just blowing smoke.

bosco

You can always tell when a politician is lying....their lips are moving.[wink]

Dwasserba

People in the city aren't any better informed than anywhere else. "The city" comprises a lot more than the historic district, where businesses may benefit. Homeowners? Ok. At what expense to quality of life, will be a matter of opinion. Start this topic as conversation. Expect to hear, "What's this, now?" even from those living a scant two miles from the project.

klewisyoung

My staff has counted all of the letters and emaisl that we received on this topic: 90 for, 10 against. Of those 10 against, three are from City of Frederick residents.

richardlyons

from an unbiased source. I didn't send you an email but you can count me a city resident as "against". So make that 11 against and 4 city residents against.

KellyAlzan

This hotel has assured Karen and Ron young that their political careers are over. Well, at least there are enough walmarts in Frederick - I'm sure one of the walmarts is bound to need some greeters.....

BlueDawn666

And we are supposed to believe that? so where did the 90 for letters all come from? Were they all from Frederick city residents? You can't count the for letters if they came from anywhere outside of Frederick....and so freaking what there were 90 for letters..

KellyAlzan

Hay Karen - I didn't send you an email either. I don't live in the city.

You can count me as a "nay" as well.

And Karen - why would I send you, the one in support of this criminal act, an email expressing my opposition??!

I bet hough has received more than (10) opposition emails

DickD

So, you got 90 e-mails from your friends, good, now put it out for a referendum and we will see what people really think.

MAVRICKinc7

So, did your staff tally how many letters and emails were received to justify 90 for, 10 against. Are you saying, without including a percentage measurment, that the 90 letters and emails your staff counted the the 10 that were against the project, represents the citizen population of Frederick AND Frederick County? How much more skewed can you make this conversation out to be, while playing with words that can justify only another LIE we keep getting back from our elected leaders, by OMMISSION? I'm from Frederick, so why not add me to the count of those that OPPOSE this project?

dawsongrove

As a city taxpayer you can put me in the no column. I don't trust THE numbers for the conference center. Get a supporter to underwrite the losses would be a step in the right direction.

bosco

Klewisyoung, since city, county, and state taxpayer dollars are being requested, why not put it to a vote? See how taxpayer$ really feel about giving our dollar$ to the Randall$ and the Plamondon$ to build a private hotel and conference center. Put it to a vote.

DickD

I would love to see this on a ballot.[thumbup]

bosco

I too would like to see this on a ballot.[thumbup]

gary4books

The Senator stated an opinion based on his contacts with people in the City. It should be a good estimate.

MAVRICKinc7

What's a Senator or Delegate members OPINION worth on the open market? Gray Market or Black Market? AND, what PERCENTAGE of the Frederick City and County citizen population makes up this 90 for and 10 against that accounts for a MAJORITY OPINION of the Frederick citizen population and that of Frederick County elected leadership that's beating this same drum as much as the Mayor and his Alderpersons are?

So, how many CONTACTS with people in the City did the SENATOR shake hands with, on this project? Can we count their number on two hands? Karen Lewis Young is the one who was willing to perpetuate this LIE and Ron can't be that far behind, as with Jan Gardner. Instead of ACCEPTANCE by default why don't WE ask a few hard questions that the Young dynasty might want to rethink their answer?

DickD

Ron and Karen attended, might have invited Blaine too, if he is out of jail.

FrederickFan

Jane...You are losing all credibility. I saw a Facebook exchange between you and County Executive Gardner where she shared that there was a public meeting on the County's letter of support for the project, and that a majority of the County Council voted to support it, also in public.

Not one dollar of County money has been spent to date, and a public process will be required before any money is spent. We both know this. So now I can't believe anything you say.

jill king

[thumbup]

Nicki

Exactly right, FrederickFan!

shiftless88

The question that needs to be asked is not "could this be done" but "why must it be done?" Sure, there are reasons one can point to where others might benefit, but the same could be said about anchor stores in the mall. Should we pay Macy's way? Should we pay half of the Sheetz station? Of course not. If it's a good deal it will happen without funding and if it requires funding it's not a good deal

jill king

There are numerous examples of funded business development in Frederick City and County. Incentives are needed in specific cases. Examples include, Flying Dog Brewery, Brewers Alley, The Golden Mile revitalization program and numerous other tax credits and incentivized occupancy. For that matter the state senate just approved $38M for Northrop Grumman. Baltimore is looking for over $100M to demolish blighted areas. The way I see it is we have two choices, enrich the economy, fill empty buildings and provide jobs and revenue or do nothing and maybe we can ask the state to tear down dilapidated blighted buildings that have produced no jobs or revenue in a few decades. Option one seems much more thoughtful.

shiftless88

Should I point out that the building being considered hasn't been vacant for decades? Should I also point out, yet again, that you present reasons it could be done but not why it MUST be done? Are you saying that it is not financially feasible? And if it is not, then why does it become more financially feasible if the taxpayers kick in? If it loses money, it loses money either way. Why MUST this be done.

Dwasserba

[thumbup]88 Adding, we have some blighted buildings, privately owned, but hardly on the massive scale of Baltimore. Ten years from now, we'll have a few blighted buildings.

richardlyons

[thumbup] Hyperbole is Jill's strong suite.

DickD

Most likely because the Randalls cannot and would not get "fair market value" from anyone else. Put it on the auction block and see what you can get for it. Of course, the Plamondons are getting a gift horse not given to any other business too.

DickD

Not from my point of view.

DickD

There has to be a limit on how our taxes are spent. We can afford this and not fund schools, bridges, highways, etc. This is utter nonesense and corporate welfare, legal stealing by politicians.

Jane and Ed

I hope to see some clarification in the Frederick News Post regarding this announcement from the Mayor's office. I believe the only money that was approved was $1 million and that was contingent on MOU being renegotiated, signed by the local city and county government and also getting stadium authority approval. The next $7.5 million for each of the following 2 years was I believe contingent on Governor including in budget. It's not as though this is a done deal. I hope the newspaper will report it.

DickD

Actually, they did in the printed version, not the on line article.

Jane and Ed

Dear Nancy, Please report that there is a growing group of concerned citizens who oppose the lack of transparency and opportunity for public discussion and dialog on the Downtown hotel.


Regarding your article, just out;
We are concerned that once public funds are committed the project will be pushed ahead without regard for the public's concerns and objections. Up until recently the local government claimed that no public money would be used. Now, it's apparent that nearly half of the estimated cost of the Downtown Marriott will be paid with city,county and state funding. The County executive announced her support of this project without taxpayers of Frederick County knowing that or having a chance to weigh in.

If the plans for this project were in order and the deal was actually good for Frederick County the boosters would be open to open and full public discussion.

Instead, the majority of Frederick County delegates voted it down, the general assembly did not approve it, and now the proponents are working late at night to rush ahead with funding without fair and open public process.

I asked Jan Gardner to come to this public forum but she had a previous engagement. I think she should have held public discussion meetings with the County herself before spending our tax dollars.

Burgessdr

Jane Weir

Your claim that there has been a "lack of transparency and opportunity for public discussion and dialog on the Downtown hotel" is utter nonsense. This specific project has been in the works since 2009, and the concept of a Downtown Hotel and Conference Center dates to 1996 - two decades ago. Where have you been? Why did you not attend the many many public meetings that occurred over the last 6-7 years. Why did you not follow the issue in the Frederick Post? They have published probably two dozen articles prior to the recent RFP, award, and MOU.

The proceess has been transparent with plenty of opportunity for public discussion. Hundreds of other people have followed and participated. Your head has been stuck in the sand.

For example, on February 3, 2010 (SIX YEARS AGO), there was a Mayor & Alderman Public Workshop where the Downtown Frederick Hotel Advisory Committee briefed the City on the project. There was a discussion and public testimony - all of who were very supportive of the project.

Where were you?

At this PUBLIC workshop, Eileen Mitchell, deputy to Fort Detrick garrison commander Colonel Robinson spoke and said "We tried for many years to do a conference center at Fort Detrick. We dont have the space but do have the need. We want a downtown hotel where one can eat, shop, and have a fun time during the conference. We are looking forward to do anything needed to help this project go forward."

http://cityoffrederick.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?view_id=16&clip_id=551&meta_id=13776

DickD

We are doing this for Ft. Dietrich? lol

MAVRICKinc7

Other than blowback, where would YOU have the citizen population of Frederick and Frederick County go to get the dirt and details of this present project, 6 years later? You've obviously been standing on the sidelines for quite some time. Where do WE find a forum for public interaction with our elected officials that constitutes PUBLIC involvement with this project?

The Frederick News Post building has been on the open market for years but no buyers. All we've heard is the the building was up for sale, without a contingent plan. Now we have the same private players in charge, including the Frederick News Post building and long standing partners to the Randall family fortune and their use of State, City and County resources that amount to the ethics of a card shark.

If there were so many opportunities for the public to weigh in on this, how is it the FNP is the only entity (conflict of interest) that is selling and editing this project and proposal to the citizen population with nothing of record, other than anecdotal recall that has remained behind closed doors from 1996 to todays date?

Do you constitute ALL in recollection of a meeting that took place on February 3, 2010. If you have attended ALL these meetings, where can we find the DISCUSSION and PUBLIC TESTIMONY that ALLEGEDLY included ALL of who were very supportive of a project that wasn't made known to the public until a year ago?

Dwasserba

Beneath this comment an anoymous poster has chosen to address you using your full real name, which is not a surprise to anyone following this story, but in light of the poster's name status, imo is rude. Just to say, I am a Jane Fan. "Everyone" has not decided this is a wonderful idea. Some have had reservations from way way back, but it's not what you know, it's who you know here. And anyway I don't know. But I am tired of hearing I want this before I have said so. And just saying things basically like that should subject no one to slings and arrows. Deb Wasserbach

Burgessdr

Click on Jane and Ed icon. It says Jane Weir. ???

jerseygrl42

what you say is unfortunately true and typical;l of this county; if you recall it was the prior group of BoCCV and its mouthpiece Marschner who told us over and over that the taxpayers would not be on the hook to pay the cost of the incinerator...nothing but a BIG LIE yet Marscher is still drawing $71/hour as a contract employee of this county .....a shameful example of the lack of caring for or about the citizens of this county, who voted these folks into office

DickD

Excellent comment. [thumbup][thumbup][thumbup]

klewisyoung

This project has been vetted in the public for seven years. Well over 20 public meetings have been held including citizen NAC meetings. The ENTIRE costs of the hotel will be paid by the developer. Public funds will be only allocated to infrastructure with a public benefit such as the conference center, utilities, and road improvements. The majority of the state delegation did NOT vote against this project. The vote on the MSA bill was 4-3-1. Therefore, a majority of the delegation did NOT vote against this bill. However, among those legislators who represent the City of Frederick, 100% of us were in favor. Also, the City of Frederick Board of Aldermen were 100% in support of this project.

BlueDawn666

The ENTIRE costs of the hotel will be paid by the developer. Public funds will be only allocated to infrastructure with a public benefit such as the conference center, utilities, and road improvements..oh you are so deluded Karen Young you really think we are going to buy what you are selling..huh? Of course you can tell yourself that the majority didn't vote against it..but then you could also say that the majority didn't vote for it..couldn't you? Also the Alderman were all for a 3rd Walmart on the Goldenmile..so what is your point..that the Alderman are stupid?

DickD

[thumbup][thumbup][lol][lol]

FreddyFred

Yup. Plus Karen touting all the letters for this and only a few against fails to mention the full court press by city hall's public outreach arm The Downtown Partnership, who probably got most of their letters in support of this from that bogus brick walled "hotel room" they did for First Saturday. If we were actually talking about a hotel that looked like what they mocked up for that stupid stunt, with brick walls and dorm furniture, it would be a $60 a night youth hostel (which would be awesome!) rather than this bloated, overpriced hotel for a certain segment of business travelers with money to burn.

MAVRICKinc7

SO, what you are trying to tell us is that this PROJECT was a done deal seven years ago?

Isn't a vote of 4-3-1 cutting reality a little too close with $19M in tax payor money at stake? Had it been a 4-4 vote we wouldn't even be having this discussion.

This last minute inclusion into the State budget, speaks volumes to what WE have come to, by getting one delegate to stand down and shove this legislation through the General Assembly, BUT with no signature by the Govenor of the State ATTACHED.

Is this project one of necessity or just a bowl where we get to wash our hands of the scheme you and your partners have endorsed with the public being included only by and through STAGED performances and Scripted messaging. You can't be trying to tell us that "DUE PROCESS" hasn't been mangled a mauled beyond recognition in todays political invironment. Aren't you as much the designated hitter for public distrations,distortions and word smithing. Is the citizen population of Frederick and Frederick County as dumb as you claim them to be?

petersamuel

Del Young: when the DHCC project was supported unanimously by the Mayor and Board of the City the project was presented as hotel and conference center (CC) both privately owned and operated, and the vote was followed assurances the City and its taxpayers would not be responsible for any operating costs or losses. The project was dramatically altered after discussions with the Md Stadium Authority, the state funder, as reflected in the referral bills HB1474/SB1038 that you failed to get support for in Annapolis. Those bills spelled out the MSA’s requirement that the City contract to take full responsibility for CC operating costs and deficits. Further the hotel is now described as the privately owned part and the CC is described as ‘public’ — in effect it is to be a City business. That totally changes the terms of the project. The Mayor and Board have not had the new terms of the deal presented to them, and it has not even been discussed. Also the only consultant studies were of the hotel and CC as an integrated operation. If the CC is now to be separated out and it is to be a City responsibility we need financial estimates of its financial viability. How much are we as city taxpayers up for? Be assured you and other hotel boosters will not do a bait and switch without a major fight.

Burgessdr

Samuel. Both the hotel and conference center will be privately owned. The conference center is and always has been by definition a "public facility" because it would be constructed using "public revenue bonds." The city will not own nor operate the convention center - the hotel and conference will be operated under the Marriott brand and owned and operated by Plamondon. The rights and responsibilities of the parties is (and will be spelled out in the MOU). Nothing has changed. You might consider becoming familiar with financial instruments. Please consider Montevue as an option.

Burgessdr

Samuel. You are very confused and don't understand the basic economics of municipal bonds.

MSA issues revenue bonds. The bonds are issued to a municipality. The municipality guarantees the bonds with a revenue source. That's why they are called Revenue Bonds. They are not General Obligation bonds where PUBLIC tax dollars are pledged and the bonds are backed by the full faith and credit of the municipality. With Revenue Bonds, the credit of the municipality is NOT encumbered, only the Revenue Source.

The revenue source is specified in a contract between the MSA and the municipality. Prior to issuing the bonds and establishing a contract, a MOU is reached setting out the terms of the contract for the bond issuance.

In this case, there will be a MOU and subsequent contract between the MSA and the City of Frederick where the City will guarantee the revenue from the Marriott Hotel and Conference Center, owned and operated by Plamondon, as the source to pay back the MSA bonds. In the unlikely event of default on the bonds (Marriott properties don't fail), the bond holders (private investors) would be impacted. The City of Frederick would not be responsible and public tax dollars would not be impacted.

The City of Frederick and public tax dollars will NOT be responsible for operating costs. Only Plamondon. This will be all spelled out in the MOU and subsequent contract between MSA and the City of Fredrick.

This is how revenue bonds work. Your comments show that you are very confused about the issue.

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