Not sure we want a business like Wal-Mart in our community

Filed under: Opinion |

Dear Mr. Matejczyk,

Here are my wife’s and my concerns about the proposed Wal-Mart store on Baptist Road.

1. The increased traffic from Wal-Mart will worsen the already congested situation on Baptist Road. The Monument Marketplace will increase traffic, but that area has an alternate outlet at Highway 105 via the new Jackson Parkway. The Wal-Mart store will directly increase traffic and detrimentally affect safety on Baptist Road, with no funds to improve this situation for years.

2. This proposal violates El Paso County’s Policy Plan, the Tri-Lakes Comprehensive Plan, Monument’s Comprehensive Plan, and the Chaparral Hills covenants.

3. The Wal-Mart store will take revenues away from local area businesses, and will NOT put the monies back into the economy like the Monument Marketplace businesses will. Most of the Wal-Mart revenues will go to Arkansas. Many local businesses in the Monument area will suffer and may even close because of Wal-Mart. This has happened in most places where Wal-Mart has moved in. As a consequence, Monument may have to lay-off some government employees, including police officers.

4. It is a documented fact that crime increases in and around Wal-Marts. A man was murdered several weeks ago at a Colorado Springs Wal-Mart. Additional police patrols will be required for the store, at a time when funds will be short and getting tighter due to Wal-Mart’s negative affect on the local economy. Monument police will have to assume patrol duty. If Monument has to reduce its police force due to economic constraints, public safety not only at the store but in the surrounding area will be compromised. We will be more at risk from criminals.

5. Voters will have no say regarding the PIC’s actions or who is on its Board of Directors. The PIC will have no accountability to local residents. This circumvents the democratic process.

6. Wal-Mart was not forthcoming in discussing its proposals with residents. If they treat them that way, how do we know that they are being forthcoming with local officials when discussing the benefits of the Wal-Mart store? That is not ethical behavior. An honest company would have been upfront in its dealings, not hiding anything. We do not want that kind of business in this community.

Sincerely,

Brian Freese