Citizens express their Heartland Park concerns at town hall meeting

TOPEKA (KSNT) — The City of Topeka wants input on coming up with a solution that satisfies both the city and its community.

“We had people that were favor walking away and having the tax payers pay off $10 million and people that did not want that to happen,” said Karen Hill, councilwoman.

Back in October more than 4,000 Topeka residents signed their names to a petition demanding a public vote on the City’s decision to purchase the track, issuing more than $5 million in star bonds and to improve the surrounding area.

“I don’t want to throw good money after bad and right now I don’t see anything good with what has been happening and what’s going on,” said Mike Brown, a concerned resident.

In order to expand the star bond district around the track the city will be taking on more debt, $17 million in debt with these additional bonds.

“We are the city today is not planning to invest anymore money into Heartland Park beside these star bonds,” said Hiller.

If the City does not save Heartland Park, the track is headed towards foreclosure and the city would lose $200,000 in annual sales tax revenue.

“If they put it to a vote and the people say they want the track I will support it fully, if they don’t then let it go,” said Brown.

Wednesday’s vote could be delayed because of the uncertainty over an appeal of the ruling invalidating the petitions.

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