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The Political Motivation Behind the Roswell Bond Question

Roswell's bond referendum question is politically motivated!

This bond referendum question is politically motivated!

There has been a lot of rhetoric about the Roswell bond question. It’s all been a smokescreen; a diversion to focus the public’s attention away from the real dilemma facing Roswell’s city government!

The absolute worst case scenario for a politician is to have to publicize a property tax increase during an election year. That is precisely what Mayor Wood wishes to avoid, as well as the next three Council members up for re-election, even if it requires deceiving the public.

If this bond issue is voted down, then the last dollar that the city needs to take in to retire all existing debt will be during the next fiscal year.

Does that mean my taxes will go down?

That would be completely up to the Roswell City Council and they would have two options. They could decrease taxes for property owners, but the only thing the Mayor and Council admit is that property taxes will not go up.

Well that is the wrong answer to the important question!

Or will they issue a new bond that continues to utilize existing debt service income that would otherwise have been retired, allowing the city government to continue to collect property owner’s money?

This latter option is their intention and it will temporarily allow them to avoid advertising a property tax increase until after the next election in November 2013.

Lee Fleck

Roswell's Budget Hawk

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Tom Cork October 22, 2012 at 09:17 PM
BUDGET HAWK, Of course the proposed bond is politically motivated to keep the debt service money flowing into the city treasury that can be used to help cover help general expenses. Roswell city government is overspending and has been since 2008. The projects that are proposed in the bond are designed to give certain voting segments, therapeutic pool for the elderly, artificial turf for the young families, $6 million dollars to be spent on a State highway for commuters, to name a few. The city politicians want to give the voters something they want, not need, so the city politicians can get their pictures made in a year or so and tell the voters, look we gave you what you wanted and now we want you to give us what we want---re-elected. How foolish can we taxpayers be? Voting ourselves a tax, this bond, that your children and grandchildren will be paying off in 2024 and 2028 when these bonds mature. VOTE NO ON THE BOND REFERENDUM AS I HAVE ALREADY DONE!!!!!!!
Lee Fleck October 23, 2012 at 03:27 AM
During the public meeting held this past Sunday at the Wexford subdivision, Councilman Dippolito admitted that the language of the bond question does not specifically spell out the projects on the November ballot and as hard as Councilman Dippolito tried to deny it, the truth was exposed that the city will have $25.3 million in unallocated funds available for any or all of the proposed project. It is worth noting that in addition to the excess reserves, the city also has $6.7 million in an escrow account “right now” to pay off all the debt, principle & interest, due in the next fiscal year. And according to Roswell’s Finance Director, Keith Lee sufficient funds will be collected from Roswell property owners just eight (8) months into the next fiscal year such that the city will be debt free. The bottom line is that by next June 30th, the City government will be faced with the two options noted above, and if they are real lucky and the unnecessary bond passes next month, they can wipe the sweat off their brows and slap each other on the back because they will have deceived the public long enough to avoid announcing a property tax increase next year. Finally, during this same meeting, Councilman Dippolito admitted that the City routinely spends some $6 million annually more than they receive in revenue, and that is why the City cannot afford to lose a like amount by allowing a tax reduction for property owners when the city becomes debt free next fiscal year.
No Name October 23, 2012 at 02:11 PM
Roswell citizens, don't do it. Learn from Alpharetta. We just did the same thing and wound up with a bait-and-switch on how the project was supposed to pan out. Make them do what every household has had to do over the last four years -- eke out the best you can on what you've got. It is unseemly for politicians to have their greedy hands out during times like these. Betty Price voted for this? Hmmmmmm.......
Tango Mike Mike October 23, 2012 at 06:54 PM
The total lack of transparency and disdain for the public's money is precisely the reason that a number of people, including Mr. Fleck, ran against the incumbents last election. I don’t think it was Mr. Fleck, but someone brought this bond up over a year ago, and went after his opponent about the profligate and deceitful spending at city hall. Balanced budget my ear. – your budget isn’t balance if you reach into savings to pay your bills - which is exactly what the city has been doing. In large measure, the ridiculous bond issue (and the already realized rise in the city expenditures for maintenance and operations) is a reprise of whether our citizens are willing to listen now when they wouldn't listen during last year’s election. We’ll see. No Name makes a good point, but Alpharetta still hasn't bested (in some people’s opinion) the "Worst City Council in North Fulton" from Roswell – not by a long shot, but then again, perhaps they haven’t had enough practice or time. One final point; the fact that various city officials and employees are publicly campaigning for this bond not only is a clear violation of state law, but is testament to how artfully this council has set about deceiving the general public while making sure the city continues to lag behind private companies in tightening its belt. With over 600 employees actively campaigning to save their own incomes, who cares what crazy stunt they need to come up with – the public just gets to pay.
Lee Fleck October 24, 2012 at 01:28 AM
Roswell's Bond on Channel 2 Action News http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ECJPP9mAfAg

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