NIT Opinion –
Winnebago passed over Mason City once again, announcing today it has purchased a building in Waverly, Iowa – 50 miles further down the Avenue of the Saints – to increase manufacturing of its products.
The Winnebago Industries main production facility is in Forest City, covering about 200 acres, not counting parking areas near the main complex. There are also satellite manufacturing facilities in Iowa at Charles City and Lake Mills – and now, there will be one in Waverly. The company employs just under 3,000 people.
You can be sure, these jobs coming to Waverly will pay more than $9.50 an hour, the benchmark set in Mason City by crooks like Jean Marinos and Eric Bookmeyer. Yes, they are crooks. When politicians look out for themselves first, and the people second, they are crooks.
By now, everyone is wondering, “What is going on in Mason City? Why are people leaving this town in droves? Why are there never any new jobs except crappy retail? Those Winnebago jobs are sorely needed here, but they pay too much. You can’t have outfits coming to town and competing on the wage scale like that. One wonders if Winnebago wanted to come here, but was not encouraged to do so.
The evidence is mounting; this deal between Waverly and Winnebago is the writing on the wall. Something is very wrong in Mason City, but no one will talk about it. The so-called “mainstream media” for sure will not; they serve only the Chamber of Commerce and a few “elite” cronies in town by covering-up the obvious sickness in this community. Their relentless “ra-ra” attitude would make a billy goat puke.
Some plain truth is in order, to counter-balance their cover-up of epic proportions.
What you have here in Mason City is a community going nowhere. Blue Zones, pipe-dream hockey arenas that benefit only a few, a remodeled hotel no one in town uses, and endless stories in the Globe Gazette and Facebook posts by a couple dozen unwavering cheerleaders serve as the shroud that attempts to hide the very real evidence right before everyone’s eyes that this place is sliding backward real quick.
Sure, we got new schools; spent tens of millions on them. And no kids are in them. Fewer and fewer every year. But, your taxes are going up; the school board just raised them again.
Ya, we got new elderly apartments out west. Built on a 45-miles-per-hour road, next to a door factory and a hot dog plant, behind a Menard’s loading dock and a trailer park home to countless sex offenders and hardened-criminals. Sounds like a retirement paradise. We’re lucky to have this development at all, since landlord councilwoman Jean Marinos didn’t want it to come here. Maybe that’s why it’s getting built in a light-industrial zone, miles away from her rental empire?
They’ve been talking about another downtown hotel (this time, it’s a Marriot) for almost two years now. No ground has moved, and the parking lot is still there. They lied about that to help win an election and bamboozle the sheep. Meanwhile, the Clarion is getting demolished and a replacement will be done before anything ever happens downtown. That, folks, proves they lied. A real deal gets done; their lie was all hot air to keep their enterprise intact.
The west side of town looks decent, if you like big-box retail. But the north, south and east corridors look like a time warp back to 1985. Maybe even worse than they did back then.
The Globe gave a thumbs-up to Huber Supply for moving downtown to 4th Street. And Huber deserves it. Our information says Huber never asked for any help from the city, county, NIACOG, or the North Iowa Corridor, and the building looks fantastic. Congrats to them for doing business the way it should get done in America – on your own merits instead of leeching off the people. What the Globe left out was how the previous occupant of Huber’s building – Metalcraft – took every cent it could get from anyone who would hand it over, to move way out west, out of the downtown area. Our figures show over $1 million in total from NIACOG, the Corridor and Mason City taxpayers. It helps when you lived next door to Scott Tornquist, now doesn’t it?
The Globe should write a story about Welfare Avenue… make that North Federal. Dr. Lala, Scott Moorman, Robin Anderson’s Chamber headquarters. They all took big bucks from the government to get their businesses in order. You paid, so they could get rich. Just look it up, see where these people live. Then dig into who paid for their businesses to move and improve. We paid.
This list could go on. And on. And on.
You see, this town has been and continues to be robbed blind by the few connected people that have the city by the throat. They have banded together collectively through the Chamber of Commerce and City Hall. These folks got Eric Bookmeyer elected and have saw to it he stayed in. His dirty tricks helped elect the council we are saddled with, 4 of whom are people with little or no intellect, are lazy and pretty much just dumb self-servers and total under-achievers. Embarrassments, to say the least. They have helped move
Robin Anderson out of her shabby offices in the Bank of America building into her multi-million dollar palace on North Federal, where she now calls the shots in this town, through the mayor, who controls the council and Brent Trout. Mason City is Robin’s fiefdom. They do Robin Anderson’s bidding, satisfy her whims. The people – 99.9% of them – have been trampled over the last 6 plus years as this situation materialized. You think the Chamber of Commerce gives a shit how much your hourly pay is? If you are on a fixed income? You think they care about the well-being of this community? You think they want high voter turnout, a government that represents everyone? No, they do not. They want to silence you and take, and take and take some more. It is a lobbying organization, bent on trampling common people and boosting bottom lines, enriching themselves only. It’s a shame they run Mason City, and it’s a shame this town will go nowhere while they are able to protect their own interests on the backs of the citizens.