First we're told that the City of Toledo just doesn't have enough money to cover the costs of the parks and recreation, so we must have a brand new, 10-year 1 mill levy, despite the fact that the city budgets $900,000 a year for parks and they promised that revenue from additional red-light cameras would go to parks.
Then, we're told that the city is going to have a $900,000 carry-over so there is plenty of money for Mayor Mike Bell to give raises totaling $295,000 (not counting benefits and taxes) to 55 of his administrators.
Now we learn that the city wants to build a water park - if their levy, Issue 5, passes.
So much for not having enough money to handle current expenses.
Here is the press notice for today:
Mayor, Council members announce plan for aquatic facilities
Funding for proposal would be contingent on passage of Issue 5
Toledo Mayor Mike Bell and members of Toledo City Council will announce a proposal for city aquatic facilities at a press conference at 1:30 p.m. on Tuesday, October 30. The proposal would include a centralized water park featuring waterfalls and slides as well as a secondary facility for senior aquatic activities, to be located at on of the city’s existing senior centers. Funding for the proposal in the capital budget would be contingent on the passage of Issue 5 on the November ballot.
We already have plenty of aquatic facilities in the YMCAs and the Boys and Girls Club. And what about the Master Plan the city is spending $25,000 in a no-bid contract to develop? How can they announce a water park without first having the master plan?
Clearly this is meant to convince seniors they need to raise their taxes by saying yes to the levy, otherwise, why announce a possibility?
Toledo has decimated the Capital Improvements Plan Fund (CIP) to the tune of $50 million, depriving residents of needed funds to handle road improvements and other infrastructure needs. The 2012 budget called for stealing another $12 million from the CIP. This is all to cover yearly costs that are considerably more than income.
Rather than cut out unnecessary spending (it's ALL necessary, don't you know), they decided to ask for even more money - raising taxes on the poor and middle class.
And this parks and rec levy isn't the end. Since the levy is for ADDITIONAL items, not just to sustain existing ones (hello water park), there will be additional costs in the future to maintain all the new things they want to do - just like with the MetroParks. Can you say "stuck on stupid"?
But pay no attention to the man behind the curtain...these are not the droids you're looking for...let us bribe you into passing a brand new tax to 'improve your quality of life.'
As I've said before, my quality of life would be much better if they'd stop taking money from me to improve my quality of life.
Don't be fooled by this. Say NO to Issue 5 - and the other six levies that are on the ballot.