The City has gotten itself into a financial situation and it is depending on a bailout from a large corporation to fix it. Is Sandusky too dependent on one corporation? How much involvement will the corporation have when it comes to spending the additional revenue?
If passed, the new revenue will be designated to different funds. The distribution of funds is very basic. It is not enough for the city to assure the residents that the money will be spent correctly according to
what was agreed upon, but to offer up a yearly report of the expenditure breakdown in detail for each category. The city should be able to produce such a report, if the city is actually doing what it said it
would do for the additional tax revenue.
The whole tax deal is odd especially the perpetual $500,000 payment being made to the city by the corporation. I think the $500,000 should have had an expiration date on it, or at least reviewed yearly
to see if the city actually needs the additional money. The $500,000 was not designated, so it will probably be going into the General Fund. I wonder if some of the money could make its way into the City Hall Building Fund under the development category.
The legislation mentioned that each year 6.25 percent of the income tax money will go to pay down debt, but I think it should be more than 6.25 percent. Part of the city’s problem is that there is way too much debt. The city just keeps rolling over the debt and not making any real progress at getting the debt off and keeping it off. The city is paying $2,985,626 just in interest towards its total debt, plus, the city must carry $3 million in savings to cover the debt obligation. The principal on the overall debt is about $4.3 million, so you can see how much money is being tied up with debt obligation.
Further, the legislation states that 88.75 percent of income tax funding will go into the General Fund and 5 percent will go towards the Capital Improvement Fund. The wording on the legislation before each funding allocation states that the allocation of funding can be “modified by ordinance." What the wording doesn’t say is modified by ordinance and approved by the voters. Maybe, I am not reading it
correctly, but shouldn’t any modifications go on to be approved by the voters since they approved of the original allocations?
Sandusky needs to concentrate on jobs to build up the income tax base so it can become self-sustainable. To go on like the city has been going on, will surely result in filing for bankruptcy. Maybe, bankruptcy is not a bad idea, because someone else would come in and order the city to do what needs to be done to become solvent.
I hope that if the residents approve of the additional revenue, that the city will spend the money wisely and not place special interest ahead of the prioritized needs of the community.