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Our tax dollars should be used to support residents in need, not as a billion-dollar insurance policy for developers

Investments toward child care assistance, affordable housing and access to health care — not handouts to developers — are what will truly help Illinois families and communities thrive.

One Central development proposal
The massive One Central development proposed for an area just west of Soldier Field would include several high-rise buildings. They would include offices, residences, retail space and a hotel.
Provided by Landmark Development

As an Illinois taxpayer, I thank the Chicago Sun-Times Editorial Board for speaking sense about the One Central development proposal.

Landmark Development’s “civic build” transit hub is really a taxpayer-built handout to a private developer who apparently can’t afford to build his own project without state funding.

I’m not mollified by Landmark’s promise to self-fund the transit hub that no transit agency asked for or seems to really want. Landmark will pay $3.8 billion, reap any profits it generates, then sell it to Illinois taxpayers for $6.5 billion 20 years later. It’s a deal we must refuse.

SEND LETTERS TO: letters@suntimes.com. Please include your neighborhood or hometown and a phone number for verification purposes. Letters should be approximately 350 words or less.

State tax dollars are not an insurance policy for developers. Further, this is no time to underwrite more investment into Chicago’s downtown skyline. Tax dollars used for economic development should prioritize equity with support to neglected and under-supported communities.

As President Biden’s Build Back Better package demonstrates, there are many more ways for government to invest in our communities. Illinois tax dollars should support residents across this state in critical need of childcare assistance, affordable housing, access to health care, senior services and a host of other state programs. These investments — not handouts to developers — are what will truly help Illinois families and communities thrive.

Marj Halperin, South Loop

Republican fairness

Chris Christie, Mike Pompeo and so many others charge that Illinois election maps are unfair. How about also looking at states controlled by Republicans?

In 2020, Democrats won the Georgia presidential election and two Senate races. In 2018, Democrats lost by 1.4% in the governor’s race. Seems reasonable to expect about a 50/50 split in representation and yet Republicans control the Georgia Senate 34-22 and the House 103-77. Think gerrymandering might have been involved?

Even that isn’t satisfactory to Georgian Republicans. They changed the law so the state election board can override county election boards.

Why is Adam Kinzinger against the “For the People Act?” This bill would get rid of gerrymandering in all states. Could it be that Republicans know they benefit much more nationally from the current rules? Doesn’t Kinzinger realize that adhering to Trump-inspired rules will result in the nightmare of Trump (or a Trump wannabe) being in power again? I thought that’s what he was fighting against.

I hope Gov. J.B. Pritzker emphasizes the need for fair elections in all states. But before that is in place, why should Democrats give up an advantage that Republicans use so blatantly?

Kevin Coughlin, Evanston

Two Democratic senators on a power trip

President Lyndon B. Johnson is famous for saying “politics is the art of the possible.”

Democrats are clearly struggling to find what’s possible with regard to their human infrastructure legislation. What’s becoming apparent from the tortuous negotiations is that two senators — Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema — have far too much power. Two senators should never have that kind of coercive influence.

Mary F. Warren, Wheaton

Who wants to save the world?

It seems odd that Democrats can’t find three or four Republicans in the Senate who have the intelligence and integrity to pass climate change legislation. It’s disgraceful enough that Sen. Joe Manchin’s fossil fuel meal ticket is holding a bill hostage. Is the Republican Party so depraved that no GOP senators will cross the aisle to save humanity?

Jim Arneberg, Hoffman Estates