Wednesday, February 13, 2019

The 9 wording amendments to Shawnee's community center May 21 tax hike ballot--to avoid what TKC dubbed the Shawnee Swindle

All We are Saying is Give FACTS a Chance!!!!

There's still time.  Call your council reps and the Mayor.  (numbers on city web site.)  AND forward this to all, as an email:

Amend the May 21 mail-in ballot wording. Give the facts!

Say what it is, and what it is not.  That's the only way to be honest.  And let voters make a truly INFORMED decision.

This will eliminate the need for any "inserts" or never before allowed memo/speculations or illustrations/and non-binding verbiage-- by Election Commissioner Ronnie Metsker, or Mayor Michelle Distler, or anyone else.

1. That the property tax increase has no sunset. 

2. And cannot be repurposed in the future, once the GO bonds are paid off, for any new or different project. For Parks and Rec or any other department.

3. That $38 million does not contain the interest that will be paid to bond holders/investors since that will not be known until the bonds are sold.

4. That IF the mill levy is set, in July at 2.919 mills, to purchase a proposed 20 year bond, that current projections do not forecast this center ever being self sustaining.

5. The council maintains that it alone has the right to approve mill levy increases, not the public. As a currently allowable exception to the 2017 Ks. Tax Lid Bill.

6. If the council determines each year that it will require a higher mill levy than the guesstimate of 2.919 mills per year for building and maintaining operation of this one community center, at 61st and Woodland and nowhere else, Council reserves the right to raise that subsection of the mill levy, without another public vote...earmarked only to this specific project.

7. The Council maintains the option, however, of dipping into the General Fund as needed, possibly affecting funds for police and fire and other necessities.

8. This proposal calls for the City to hire and provide ongoing employee benefits to 17 new FT employees of Parks and Recreation.

9. There are no provisions herein for off duty security police officers or the payment thereof from this or any other known source.

It took two weeks of browbeating the staff and council to get them to at least say on the ballot: This will be funded by a property tax increase. 
Was that so hard???  But how much, and for how long?   
And truly, if it operates in the red, as predicted by their own "Owner's Rep Team", if they set the mill levy too low,  remember--$38 million DOES NOT COVER INTEREST!!!--it will also dip into the General Fund.  Can't you JUST tell the truth?  About this "want" that is not a "need"?

That wording concession was snuck in AFTER the meeting packet was put online. at Friday's deadline.  
Perhaps at their offsite weekend "planning" meeting of the council--off the record, with no minutes??  And no reporters??    
Once a tax is increased, unless you sunset it, it goes on forever.


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