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the facts

Jefferson, GA

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#22
Jan 17, 2013
 

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thinking wrote:
<quoted text>
Cut Teacher and Administrator salaries 5% across the board. That should pay for all you stated and then some.
I APPLAUD THE ABOVE IDEA - BUT 5% WON'T BEGIN TO EVEN PAY THE INTEREST ON THE DEBT THEY ARE RUNNING UP>>>>

REFERENCE: http://www.open.georgia.gov/
The following numbers have been compiled from the above State of Georgia website's publicly available 2012 Financial Reports for the Union County Board of Education. All numbers are for Union County BOE / 2012.

Total 2012 Union County BOE Salaries:$17,537,403.31
* includes everyone, 554+/- employees

Total Audit of Payments Made in 2012 by the BOE:$29,006,697.70
* includes everything - salaries, textbooks, electricity, computers, food, etc..

Comparing the 2 above numbers, Salaries accounted for 60% of Total Expenditures

Bottom Half (lowest paid 277 employees) make:$2,872,072.95
* 50% of the people make 16% of the money.

Top Half (highest paid 277 employees) make:$14,665,330.36
* 50% of the people make 84% of the money

Top 10 BOE Employees make a combined $900,340.00

167 Employees make over $50,000 each for a combined total of:$10,518,611.69
* 30% of the people make 60% of the money

An across the board pay cut of 5% on the Top 50% of BOE Employees would save the county $733,266 / year.

MORE FACTS FROM THE 2012 BOE SPLOST SCHEDULE:

~ The School District has INCURRED INTEREST to provide ADVANCE FUNDING as follows:$2,256,175.00

~ BOE Portion of Project 1/SPLOST '08 is underfunded as of June 30, 2012 by $8,973,565.09

THOSE ARE THE FACTS.
my view

Dahlonega, GA

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#23
Jan 17, 2013
 

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the facts wrote:
<quoted text>
MORE FACTS FROM THE 2012 BOE SPLOST SCHEDULE:
~ The School District has INCURRED INTEREST to provide ADVANCE FUNDING as follows:$2,256,175.00
~ BOE Portion of Project 1/SPLOST '08 is underfunded as of June 30, 2012 by $8,973,565.09
Examples of irresponsible spending!!! Let's not reward such actions!!! Vote NO!!!
Just Mike

Dahlonega, GA

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#24
Jan 17, 2013
 

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the facts wrote:
<quoted text>

THOSE ARE THE FACTS.
Your facts are "somewhat" useful... for me, the most irritating is what the top administrators are paid- definitely outrageous for a smaller system like UC.

The fact that (many, not all) teachers make $50k+ shouldn't shock anybody that isn't a foolish old, unsuccessful fart. What do you think high school physics, math, biology, science and English teachers could make in the "private" sector? Wake up... probably 50% more or greater! The good ones are a BARGAIN at $50k... and no, I nor anybody in my immediate family is or ever has been been a teacher.

One thing about teacher pay (and all other Public Service, Govt, and even Military employees) is that their increases are based on "time served" rather than continued achievement and merit. THAT needs to change.
observation

Jefferson, GA

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#25
Jan 17, 2013
 

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This is eye opening information indeed. Based on the existing underfunded mandates and huge debt payments it would appear that the BOE needs the additional 1% in order not to default on prior obligations - obligations which appear to have some serious questions about what happened to the money. Looks more like a ponzi scheme cooked up by that Bernie Madoff fellow. Just keep passing more and more taxes and hope that no one ever notices that their isn't any money in the pot - it's all being funneled around in confusing shell books to make it appear like all is fine. When this falls apart, there will be hell to pay.

They've blown all the advance funds.
Bill

Maysville, GA

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#26
Jan 18, 2013
 

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Two words:

Artificial Turf

Two more words:

Furlough Field
observation wrote:
This is eye opening information indeed. Based on the existing underfunded mandates and huge debt payments it would appear that the BOE needs the additional 1% in order not to default on prior obligations - obligations which appear to have some serious questions about what happened to the money. Looks more like a ponzi scheme cooked up by that Bernie Madoff fellow. Just keep passing more and more taxes and hope that no one ever notices that their isn't any money in the pot - it's all being funneled around in confusing shell books to make it appear like all is fine. When this falls apart, there will be hell to pay.
They've blown all the advance funds.
Lamar

Dawsonville, GA

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#27
Jan 18, 2013
 

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observation wrote:
This is eye opening information indeed. Based on the existing underfunded mandates and huge debt payments it would appear that the BOE needs the additional 1% in order not to default on prior obligations - obligations which appear to have some serious questions about what happened to the money. Looks more like a ponzi scheme cooked up by that Bernie Madoff fellow. Just keep passing more and more taxes and hope that no one ever notices that their isn't any money in the pot - it's all being funneled around in confusing shell books to make it appear like all is fine. When this falls apart, there will be hell to pay.
They've blown all the advance funds.
I taught them how to do that. I am the master you know.
Informed Opinion

Naples, FL

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#28
Jan 18, 2013
 

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Freak Boy wrote:
<quoted text>Give it up, you're too logical. All these whiners want is to be stingy and pay less tax, all while using all the amenities that are paid for with tax dollars. Just a bunch of whiny ass Floridiots and Yankees who whine about paying school tax, etc.
Hey, put me down in favor if using sales taxes in any town that is a tourist or second home destination.

Collect as much as possible from the folks with enough money to visit or keep second homes here, they can afford it, and in fact, they don't even notice it.

That reduces the demand on other sources of revenue.

Seems like a easy call to me. But, then again, I also believe public education should have the highest priority of all governmental obligations.
the facts

Jefferson, GA

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#29
Jan 18, 2013
 

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I don't think this is about a 1% Sales Tax. It's about uncontrolled spending, and spending in irresponsible ways. Also these projects are all being ADVANCE FUNDED. That means they do an "estimate" of what they will collect, and then they take out a loan. The last loan has already cost $2,256,175.00 JUST IN INTEREST PAYMENTS ON THE DEBT.

And how good a job did the people in charge do making the "estimate" of revenue this would generate? Well, it is UNDERFUNDED to the tune of $8,973,565.09. So why should we trust their judgement in this next round of taxes? Who is to say we won't be back here in 2 - 3 years with just larger debt and interest obligations, with more unfunded projects - and no explanation for where the money all went???

You can call this whatever you want - but in the real world, a family that makes decisions like this ends up living under a bridge. A business that makes decisions like this ends up out of business.

It isn't about the tax. It's about the lack of intelligence and sound decisions being made in the process. It's about creating an unsustainable financial model, and one that is spending money on frivolous side issues that do not involve the actual education of the kids. It is about a lack of accountability, and when TPTB make stupid decisions, they aren't asked to change course, just keep dumping more money into a bottomless pit.
AGREE

Jefferson, GA

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#30
Jan 18, 2013
 

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1. No more money without salary cuts and pay freezes.
2. No more advance loans. Establish pay as you go budget.
bogus by politicians

Dahlonega, GA

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#31
Jan 18, 2013
 

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Informed Opinion wrote:
<quoted text>
Hey, put me down in favor if using sales taxes in any town that is a tourist or second home destination.
"Study" or no study, does anyone really, really think that most of the revenue comes from tourists or second-home people when they come up on the weekends and in the summers while we locals are hear year round and purchase many more big-ticket items then those that just pass through and buy milk and bread? Wow, I've got a bunch of Brooklyn Bridges to sell.

Also, there'll be a lot less non-Union Country shoppers buying in the county when Wal-mart builds the Blue Ridge store.
Just Mike

Dahlonega, GA

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#32
Jan 18, 2013
 

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the facts wrote:
I don't think this is about a 1% Sales Tax.
Wow- thanks for your post... I didn't realize that monies raised by renewing ESPLOST will simply be ass-covering for prior over expenditures. That is just so wrong... and I'm surprised they legally get away with this. For the renewal vote, doesn't the BOE have to show expected use of proceeds? Wonder what % will be for debt service?

However, back to the actual 1% sales tax renewal (NOT INCREASE!), would you agree at least that it is the lesser evil than any other alternative? Seems that the BOE already has UC "locked into" this revenue source- wouldn't non-renewal make everything else worse?

Again- I'm certainly NOT defending past expenditures, I just don't see any other choice for the good of UC moving forward. The debt service funds WILL need to be collected one way or another- ESPLOST seems most painless at this point.

Perhaps construction of toll booths on 515 at the Towns and Fannin county borders? JUST KIDDING!!!

Since: Apr 11

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#33
Jan 18, 2013
 

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Just some info on E-SPLOST revenue.
The revenue can be used for the retirement of existing school system general obligation debt incurred for capital outlay projects, with the requirement that ad valorem property taxes must be reduced by an amount equal to the proceeds applied to debt retirement.

Takes some "fancy" bookkeeping to get around this requirement.
Just Mike

New York, NY

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#34
Jan 18, 2013
 

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Paladinhgwt wrote:
Just some info on E-SPLOST revenue.
The revenue can be used for the retirement of existing school system general obligation debt incurred for capital outlay projects, with the requirement that ad valorem property taxes must be reduced by an amount equal to the proceeds applied to debt retirement.
I'm confused by your post... you say it "can" (in certain circumstances, which ain't likely!) be used for GO Bond retirement- which I understand.

However, I thought "Just Facts" was saying that renewed ESPLOST revenues could (and will) be partially used for PAST designated ESPLOST projects that were either underfunded or for which money was borrowed. Does there currently exist unpaid debt specifically related to past ESPLOST projects? If so, how would such debt be repaid in the (unlikely) event the 1% ESPLOST was NOT renewed in March?

I'm thinking that, to most, "renewal" revenues spent on NEW initiatives is more palpable then using it to pay off prior, under-funded or "borrowed against" projects.

Since: Apr 11

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#35
Jan 18, 2013
 
Just Mike wrote:
<quoted text>
I'm confused by your post... you say it "can" (in certain circumstances, which ain't likely!) be used for GO Bond retirement- which I understand.
However, I thought "Just Facts" was saying that renewed ESPLOST revenues could (and will) be partially used for PAST designated ESPLOST projects that were either underfunded or for which money was borrowed. Does there currently exist unpaid debt specifically related to past ESPLOST projects? If so, how would such debt be repaid in the (unlikely) event the 1% ESPLOST was NOT renewed in March?
I'm thinking that, to most, "renewal" revenues spent on NEW initiatives is more palpable then using it to pay off prior, under-funded or "borrowed against" projects.
To start, I wasn't looking at what the new or old E-Splost revenue was/will be used for. I just wanted to point out two things, first, that E-Splost revenue can be used to payoff capital debt (which could be loans taken against previous E-SPLOST but not yet paid off) and second, if the E-SPLOST revenue is used to payoff capital debt there must be an equal value reduction in property tax.
I agree the E-SPLOST should be used for new ,required capital projects, however, anticipated revenue must be realistic and inasmuch as funding for the new projects will have to be borrowed both principal and interest payments must be taken into account and be able to paid from the anticipated flow of revenue. Borrowing should not be done for these projects that require payments beyond the timeline of the voter approved E-SPLOST tax.
As to your question relative topayment of debt on past projects remaining after current E-SPLOST ends and should there not be a new E-SPLOST. Only way would be an increase to the property tax.

Since: Apr 11

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#36
Jan 18, 2013
 

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bogus by politicians wrote:
<quoted text>
"Study" or no study, does anyone really, really think that most of the revenue comes from tourists or second-home people when they come up on the weekends and in the summers while we locals are hear year round and purchase many more big-ticket items then those that just pass through and buy milk and bread? Wow, I've got a bunch of Brooklyn Bridges to sell.
Also, there'll be a lot less non-Union Country shoppers buying in the county when Wal-mart builds the Blue Ridge store.
I agree that there is some "help" from tourism but the bulk comes from the full time residents. Think about it, an expenditure of $100,000 is needed to obtain $1000 in tax at the 1% rate. A flow chart of revenue by month would be interesting, you people are still paying the bulk of the bill. The sale tax concept takes the load off property owners by spreading it over all residents,even those having a difficult time making ends meet.
Extravagant expenditures of the past coupled with lousy planning/budgeting over an extended time frame have put the "little guy" deep in the hole and our elected officials make him keep digging the hole deeper.
Maybe

Maysville, GA

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#37
Jan 18, 2013
 

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I will not vote for any more SLOST tax. I don't care what its for. Our current public officials have show they can not be trusted.
RE: Reese Farm, Horse arena, Blairsville Flea market, cannery, artificial turf,new gym for 100 students 3.5 Million $.
Stupid. Just stupid.
Bill wrote:
Two words:
Artificial Turf
Two more words:
Furlough Field
<quoted text>
Concerned

Dawsonville, GA

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#38
Jan 18, 2013
 

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I understand the resistance to taxes but it doesn't justify distorting the information. Keep in mind this is not new taxes but a renewal of an existing tax. All of the projects in the current ESPLOST have been paid for and the bonds will be retired so none of the money in this renewal referendum will go to pay off past debts.

This renewal ESPLOST is expected to raise $21+ million. But being good stewards the BOE is planning projects totaling $18 million in case there is a shortfall. Additionally they are only bonding $13+ to double insure they are able to pay back the bonds on time and in full.
Maybe

Maysville, GA

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#39
Jan 18, 2013
 

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I am for starving them out!

First thing new superintendent did was hire top officials--buddies--from out of town. Now all he wats to do is buy new computers and crap.
Concerned wrote:
I understand the resistance to taxes but it doesn't justify distorting the information. Keep in mind this is not new taxes but a renewal of an existing tax. All of the projects in the current ESPLOST have been paid for and the bonds will be retired so none of the money in this renewal referendum will go to pay off past debts.
This renewal ESPLOST is expected to raise $21+ million. But being good stewards the BOE is planning projects totaling $18 million in case there is a shortfall. Additionally they are only bonding $13+ to double insure they are able to pay back the bonds on time and in full.
Also Concerned

Cornelia, GA

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#40
Jan 18, 2013
 
Public information found on those government transparency sites are extremely important; however, improper understanding will lead to misused information. For example, the Project 1/SPLOST 08 is underfunded by almost $9 million (as referenced by "the facts"). The underfunded amount is only a comparison to the initial projected amount. I guess the Board prioritized the projects and adjusted spending. We can only expect the Board to prioritize the new projects to have greatest impact on classroom instruction.
Bill

Cornelia, GA

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#41
Jan 18, 2013
 
Horseshit.
We have an artificial turf ball field.
Also Concerned wrote:
Public information found on those government transparency sites are extremely important; however, improper understanding will lead to misused information. For example, the Project 1/SPLOST 08 is underfunded by almost $9 million (as referenced by "the facts"). The underfunded amount is only a comparison to the initial projected amount. I guess the Board prioritized the projects and adjusted spending. We can only expect the Board to prioritize the new projects to have greatest impact on classroom instruction.

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