Plans for taxpayer-aided water park floated by El Paso city leaders

Schlitterbahn

Burdened by a plague of corruption among elected officials, looming pension liabilities and substandard accounting in the tax office, El Pasoans will surely be soothed by the latest idea from City Hall: A publicly-funded water park.

El Paso city leaders are entertaining plans for a park, euphemistically announced Thursday as a “partnership” between a yet-to-be-named company and the good taxpayers of the city, the El Paso Times reports

During a news conference to talk about the city's bonds and the future of El Paso, City Manager Joyce Wilson said she couldn't provide further details on the water park, and that the company asked not to be identified yet.

Wilson said that the company has several other sites across the nation, and has expressed "serious interest" in El Paso. The venture would be a public-private partnership, with the city having to contribute financially to the project, Wilson said.

The news comes after El Paso voters on Tuesday approved the highest hotel tax in the state to build a new minor league baseball park downtown -- another project that has proven the city’s knack for numbers. City leaders may want to play down that 17.5 percent tax when wooing the tourists away from Schlitterbahn and Six Flags to their new water park.

In the meantime, we at Texas Watchdog have our fingers crossed that the unnamed private interest is Dolly Parton, who in September withdrew her backing for a water and snow park in Nashville. Just the ticket for our Texas desert climes.

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Contact Lee Ann O’Neal at 713-980-9777 or leeann@texaswatchdog.org.

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Photo of a child at Schlitterbahn water park by flickr user Galveston.com, used via a Creative Commons license.