Councilman Says Investors Came To Him Regarding Lakeside Park, But Email Says Otherwise.

For almost two years, Councilman Ben Giles has stated that an investor group approached him in regards to helping fund the Lakeside Park Master Plan project. In video footage released Wednesday and posted by Friends Of Lakeside Park, one of the groups opposed to the project, Giles is seen telling the other council members that “the private investors reached out to me. The private investors reached out to me.”

The video is from an October 23, 2019 council meeting, where the Lakeside Park Pavilion Project including scope, design, location and budget were all discussed. But in an email string dating back to March 16, 2020, it was stated in the body of the email sent from an investor to a group that included Giles, “Ben, I see you are copied on this email. I concur with Tom (Schermerhorn from Excel Engineering) in the direction this (the project) appears to be headed. You came to us with this plan and we have all worked extremely hard to further develop and supported it as best we can thus far.”

Council is set to take up the matter again this evening, with the Lakeside Park Enhanced Developers Agreement listed on the agenda as an “Action Item”.