As soon as government purchases land that land is removed from private use. The land ceases to be available for income-creating ventures and is instead dedicated to the income-taking venture that is government. For this reason, it is the PCBC’s belief that government should almost never own land or buildings. There are some exceptions – military bases and schools for example - but for most government activities, rented space works best.
When government builds, it builds for future growth. Why purchase land, hire architects and contractors, and issue bonds to create a space exactly big enough for the people and functions of today’s government? Armed with this logic, many Taj Mahal city halls have arisen in nearby cities. It can be controversial to have too many empty offices and meeting rooms in that giant new building. This can prompt a race to fill the space up with more city employees working on projects that cost ever more tax payer money. Allowing government to build a large building almost guarantees that the government will become larger itself.
Many of the reasons cited for creating the new city were to support the growth of businesses and to help the blighted and under-used parts of the city thrive. What better way for the city government to support downtrodden areas than to locate its offices in those areas? What better way to set the example of how to work with landlords to bring properties up to code than to be a customer not just a dictatorial enforcement authority?
The PCBC appreciates the candidates that have come out against building a city hall in Peachtree Corners for now and ever more. We need a city council that will take a strong stance against government spending and government growth that will ensure that the new city of Peachtree Corners is and stays city-lite.
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