To the editor:
When the contract arrived for our exhibitor spaces at the Forum’s annual Trash and Treasure Sale, it contained the news that the city would be charging a $2 fee to the public for entry to the building.
This event has been free to the public since it was first started around 1985. The past manager, Jim Kaiser, said that prior city councils had considered charging entrance to the event, but he maintained that the exhibitors, who pay $50 for each 10- by 10-foot space, have already paid for the building and the city has no right to charge admission. Furthermore, a questionnaire was circulated by the Forum asking whether exhibitors objected to the fee. We heard the fee was soundly defeated.
Is this another example of the city’s government ignoring the people’s choices?
Charging a fee would substantially increase the cost of running the Trash and Treasure Sale. A ticket seller would have to be hired and security personnel to patrol the doors inside the arena because they are heavily used by the exhibitors. The fee would also cut down on “our” customers and eventually stop all return traffic.
Advertising has decreased over the past few years, and we wonder if people will know about the fee, or be surprised at the door.
We feel this is a big mistake. If Presque Isle needs money so badly, why did they pay to tear down the pool and are looking into a new City Hall?