Rivera Pier and Gage Marine follow-up.
Gage Marine pays just a bit over $181,000.00 per year, escalated each year by a percent or two, for renting the Riviera Pier complex. Over the course of the last five years, they’ve paid about seven hundred thousand dollars ($750,000) for occupying the piers, having control over them, and what happens on them, and also for being allowed to turn the front parking area into a sort of Gage Marine private parking lot. The repairs and servicing they’ve provided to the piers and the hoses and the fuel tanks over that same period of time (according to Casey Seiche, city activist) is just over $500,000.00. So, what’s going on? How much net rent is Gage really paying over a five-year period? Depends on who you want to believe? Where is the oversight? Where is the open bidding for the marine-related work so that the very company renting the property does not pad the bill to cover the rent? Not that that is happening, any more than coins were ever (or are ever) missing from the Driehaus Fountain, or cash from the beach collections (in the past, of course). That recently created and (oxymoronic expression) “trust but verify” is fully applicable to the city’s financial relationships. It is unlikely that Gage is padding the bills to cover the rent. But how unlikely is it?
Utah Blaine Oborn is gone.
He breezed into office three years ago and blew fresh air wherever he went. He worked to repair the damaged torn structure his predecessor had
managed to create. Blaine attempted to bring the Public Works Department to heel. He sought, on behalf of the citizenry and the taxpayers, to make sure that that errant department was brought under the control and the accountability of city government. The books would have been opened, and the amounts of money audited and verified. Spending would have been controlled by the city council.
But that was not to be, and in that one mission alone he failed. It was probably his undoing. The new leadership of Lake Geneva is not drawn from young blood. It was taken from the pool of old-time leaders who’ve controlled the city and the area around it for many years. That city leadership is not evil or uncaring about the community or the public served, but it is imbued with a habitual way of secretly doing things and making sure most important decisions are confidentially settled before the people get a shot at deciding what it might want. Utah Blaine is gone and the future remains unknown. Hopefully, the choice of a replacement will not have one whit of the current trend the nation is experiencing in hiring or electing populist leaders that talk the talk but can’t walk the walk.
Blaine walked the walk, and then, finally, walked right out of Lake Geneva.
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