Sandusky seems to want to hike spending, taxes

Anonymous
Feb 12, 2013

 

My topic this week is about the City’s Community Focus Meetings.

I was present for one of the Community Focus Meetings.  I had all my questions and suggestions ready to flow; but instead, I am being handed a remote transmitter.  The transmitter was provided to click the answers to the questions being placed on the screen, a multiple choice and a yes or no to the answers.  We are clicking away on our wish list when the questions start to turn ugly. The words income tax and special fees started showing up on every question thereafter to help pay for our every wish.          

It is a slippery slope to talk about income tax or special fees for certain services. We already pay for those services, but they are being slowly eliminated due to higher wages and benefits we must pay out to the employees.  Government employees are paid well above the private sector employees and the demand for more wages could become uncontrollable when special fees are implemented for different services. The worst thing that can happen is switching the fire and police into a separate tax levy placing the financial burden of responsibility directly on the taxpayer freeing up more money in the general fund.

Experiencing a recession takes on a whole new outlook on the finances.  We undergo a correction and reality checks as to how tax dollars are being spent. It seems it is so much easier to manage government by asking for more tax dollars then using management skills to think outside of the box.    

I cannot understand the city talking about moving City Hall and at the same time they think about leveling special fees or an income tax increase on the taxpayer in order to provide for the daily essentials while freeing up other money to provide for moving City Hall. The people need to see through the probability of an income tax hike or special service fees as a way to fund the City Hall move and support more wages and benefits.

Services have suffered due to poor leadership in the past which wasted so much of our tax dollars through ill-conceived development projects that the city should have never been involved in the first place. Developers come to the city stating they have a dream and then tell the city that they need to use our tax dollars and staff to make their development dream come true.  

Until next week, the taxpayer should not give the city any money to move City Hall while short changing our services in the process.
 

 

Comments

reader

Before any consideration of raising income taxes or passing special levies to pay for safety services, I would like to see an article detailing a comparison of our local admissions tax with that of other popular tourist destination communities.

Hopefully, our municipal unionized employees will realize the community can't afford big raises and some benefits, particularly the carrying over into a retirement payoff for unused vacation and sick time, need to be adjusted.

pavedparadise

Anyone out there in Blogville know why the City of Sandusky needs a $3.7 million dollar carryover balance at year's end?

reader

The city has strived to maintain a $ 3,000,000 carryover balance to keep its high bond rating from credit reporting agencies. Keeps the costs of borrowing lower.... That's my take from what I have observed and heard.

T. A. Schwanger

Ive researched other communities in Ohio similar in size and many have nowhere near the carryover balance Sandusky has and their bond rating is equal to or better than Sandusky's

There is a direct correlation between the huge amount of debt (not wages) the City of Sandusky carries and the amount of carryover balance required to keep a good bond rating.

wiredmama222

Ah, the "lets have the surplus so we can borrow" item that everyone must have. Yes, I have seen this before.

As for the city hall issue, did they not just get offered free space by the county or am I mistaken? I could swear I read that not more than four days ago in the sr. That would save a great deal of money....no raise in taxes. No new building for either the business end or the police. Pretty good deal.

So I don't see where there is an issue on tax raising with that issue at all. Does anyone else, really?

doppleganger

They were offered space at the county building. Not free space.

Darkhorse

Nothing is free. The county thinks the city is pretty gulliable for the city to pay a lot of rent out to be housed in their building. The county would be laughing all the way to the bank. If anyone thinks this is a good deal, think again. No one wants to pay continuous rent and not having something to show for it.

Centauri

"Services have suffered due to poor leadership in the past which wasted so much of our tax dollars through ill-conceived development projects that the city should have never been involved in the first place. Developers come to the city stating they have a dream and then tell the city that they need to use our tax dollars and staff to make their development dream come true."

This sums it all up.

T. A. Schwanger

Ive researched other communities in Ohio similar in size and many have nowhere near the carryover balance Sandusky has and their Moodys bond rating is equal to or better than Sandusky's

There is a direct correlation between the huge amount of debt (not wages) the City of Sandusky carries and the amount of carryover balance required to keep a good bond rating.

New York, September 19, 2012 -- Sandusky Ohio Moody's Rating

Sandusky (City of) OH -- Moody's assigns MIG 1 rating to the City of Sandusky's (OH) $3.34 million Various Purpose Improvement (GOLT) Bond Anticipation Notes, Series 2012.Top of Form 2

Aa3 rating affirmed on the city's $20.7 million of outstanding general obligation debt

New York, September 19, 2012 -- Moody's Rating

Moody's Investors Service has assigned a MIG 1 rating to the City of Sandusky's (OH) $3.34 million Various Purpose Improvement (General Obligation Limited Tax) Bond Anticipation Notes, Series 2012. Concurrently, Moody's has affirmed the Aa3 rating on the city's outstanding general obligation unlimited tax and general obligation limited tax debt. Post-sale, the city will have a total of $20.7 million of long-term general obligation debt outstanding.

Contango

Maybe buy into the Vanguard Ohio Long-Term Tax-Exempt Fund (VOHIX) and possibly share in the fun?

It has a current yield of 2.22% - better than a 10 yr. Tres'y.

rjk1915

This is both because of inflation and inflationary.

OMG.LOL.WT_

When the $$$ loses value, it takes more of them. Thank the FED.

The Answer Person

Maybe if people who are so "knowledgeable" were property owners and would contribute, we wouldn't have these problems? Just sayin'

The Answer Person

Time to check the obits!