The debate has begun over what to put in the vacated Utah State Prison area. Our valley suffers from poor air quality. There is legitimate concern about quantity and quality of water. Our freeways and alternate roads are deadlocked several times a day, and often stopped because of accidents. Promises of increased revenue for schools and other tax-supported social services and law enforcement are not meeting expectations. New jobs are not paying high enough wages for many workers to afford even small apartments in the valley.

It is clear that what we really need in the valley is measured and slow increase in population so public education and other infrastructure needs don’t increase so fast. We need more green space and trees to generate more oxygen to help our air quality, roads better able to handle the increased traffic.

But what do we hear? Developers screaming that we must do whatever we can to bring more business into the state, even if that means offering incentives that will continue to add to the problem of properly financing public schools and other government services, more traffic on our already overburdened roads, diminishing water quantity/quality and the problems associated with that. We hear, “If we fail to attract these big businesses, those 150,000 jobs are going to go somewhere else” (along with the additional family members and children needing education).

I don’t understand. Well, maybe I do.

Fred Ash, Sandy