Friday, May 16, 2008

Good Decision

The local Fox station is reporting that:

Rutherford County Commissioners Say No To Bible Theme Park

Early Friday morning, Rutherford County Commissioners said no to a proposed bible theme park. That means nearly 300 acres of farmland will not be rezoned, at least not any time soon. The county commission meeting began Thursday evening and wrapped up around 1 a.m. Friday. Hundreds of people came out to have their voices heard. Residents waited more than a year to get a vote on the project that would have transformed 282-acres in the Blackman community into a bible theme park.

Supporters were looking forward to the number of jobs and revenue the park promised.
But opponents were dreading what it would cost them. After the vote, both sides were still divided. County Commissioner Trey Gooch, a theme park opponent says, "I've been dealing with this for a year and it's come to fruition now and we're ready to move forward. We're certainly happy that the development failed in Blackman."

County Commissioner Anthony Johnson, a theme park supporter says, "People's feelings, just being scared, get in the way of real true thinking sometimes." The rezoning issue was voted down by a vote of 12 to nine.

After the meeting, Bible Park USA developer, SafeHarbor Holding LLC, issued a statement saying other proposed development of the land, such as warehouses, would not be as "friendly" to the Blackman community. SafeHarbor could still reapply for rezoning to the county.

Of course, what SafeHarbor Holding LLC didn't mention is that warehouses, even if built with tax dollars as the bible theme park was going to be, aren't likely to drag the county into an expensive First Amendment battle. It's nice to see the Christianists lose this one.

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