Closing of Asheville race track was hardly ‘dark of night’

In response to Jerry Sternberg‘s rebuttal to Karen Cragnolin and RiverLink [“The Gospel According to Jerry,” Dec. 10, Xpress], he mentions the “dark of night” closing of the Asheville Race Track. He says it was done by me and “other conspirators.” He called it “political bullying.” He said it was done “with cavalier disregard for the fans,” who he then goes on to call “the great unwashed.”

Let me once again inform Jerry of the facts. The racetrack was for sale for four years and was even advertised in the Atlanta newspaper by its owner. That is hardly “dark of night.” It was finally bought by a local developer in a legal real estate transaction. That is hardly “political bullying.” That developer gave the racetrack property to RiverLink as a gift.

RiverLink then gave the property to the city of Asheville at an open meeting of City Council. The city, in a negotiation with the new property owner and with great regard for the wonderful citizens who had enjoyed the track for so long, saw to it that the track stayed open for another year after its new owner took possession. Hardly “cavalier disregard.”

As for me and the “other conspirators” Jerry refers to, I’m very proud of my council’s open meetings, open doors and transparent policies in place throughout our four-year administration.

Leni Sitnick
Asheville

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