North Little Rock businessman Frank Fletcher, who owns the Wyndham hotel in downtown NLR, has some questions about Mayor Pat Hays’ hazy land swap to encourage development of a new hotel downtown with a parking deck financed by taxpayers and the public schools.
Fletcher has an interest, naturally, in city favors given to a potential next-door competitor. It doesn’t mean he’s wrong. He’s certainly not wrong in his court opposition to the gerrymandered midnight tax district engineered by Hays and his stooge of a city attorney to divert school property taxes from an already-completed apartment complex to his little scheme.
Is the city paying too much for a vacant building? Has its value really risen while property values generally have been falling? Who appraised the parcels involved in the swap? Is Mayor Hays’ parking deck plan really a public benefit or just a private benefit for a future hotel developer? How will the deck be built if the city loses — as it should — the lawsuit over the tax district designed to raid school taxes for Hay’s use? These are among Fletcher’s questions.