MEDIA AND BLOGGERS OUT OF CONTROL RE: ARK
You may have read media reports and blogs that have misrepresented and/or lied about AiG’s dealings with local officials who have imposed a new city tax that places almost the entire tax burden on our ministry. Here is what we are sharing with the media when they ask us about the matter:
“Because the new ordinance passed by the City of Williamstown essentially singled out the Ark Encounter to shoulder nearly all the burden for additional safety services that will benefit the entire community and not just the Ark, and because of the ordinance’s wording concerning exemptions to the safety fee, we needed to keep our options open to protect the organization for the future. We have always said we want to pay our fair share for safety services, and believed we had made a highly reasonable counter proposal to the city council.
“It has always been our desire to be a partner in helping to grow the economy of a community that welcomed us so kindly. We are saddened that the city council did not extend the courtesy of discussing this ordinance with us before passing it and taking it public, and was not willing to negotiate further.
“We are thankful that even with over a million Ark guests who have come to Williamstown in just over a year, the number of calls from the Ark Encounter for emergency services has been quite small.”–Mark Looy, CCO
Wait. We liars have been saying that AiG didn’t want to pay the taxes imposed by Williamstown, and that they shuffled ownership of the Big Gay Wooden Box to a religious non-profit to avoid those taxes. Nothing in that comment rebuts those claims. They’re calling “tax shenanigans”
keep our options open, and they’re basically admitting that they got exasperated with the Williamstown requirements and acted to protect their own interests without regard for the tax laws. So we were right! We weren’t lying!
I’m also not impressed with the objection that darn it, this safety fee will benefit the whole community rather than just AiG. I would also like to point out that the fee is to pay for safety infrastructure rather than paying out on a case by case basis, so it’s irrelevant that they’ve only needed it a few times in the past. It’s like how Republicans don’t understand what insurance is.