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    Tag: Millage

    TCAPS Tries Again

    By JGillman, Section News
    Posted on Wed Oct 23, 2013 at 10:55:30 PM EST
    Tags: TCAPS, Traverse City, Millage, Schools, Auditoriums, Performing Arts Center (all tags)

    And this time its hard to say what might happen.

    In another post it was mentioned among the comments to watch for encore performances.  Indeed that IS how it goes when some of your friendly neighborhood's largest governmental units don't succeed.  They try, and try again.

    "A proposal to raise more money for schools in Traverse City is sailing smoothly into the November election. A much larger proposal was a disaster for the school district last year. .."
    And in Grand Traverse County, the encore performance would be nothing without an auditorium request, again.

    Or rather a "performing arts center;" the one-time descriptive for a previous $26.5 million (part of $100 million) auditorium effort. Of course the proposed competition for Interlochen's stage market at 1200 seats and real cannons to remind folks of Shakespeare's globe (before said cannons burned it to the ground) was turned down by voters who are making decisions of paying the utilities or mortgage, and hardly wish to cough up more for what (given their circumstances) they might equate to frivolity.

    Certainly, $12.9 Million is hardly too much to ask for the warm fuzzies of having a state of the art (albeit smaller) palace to entertain with the 18th straight season of Les Mis. Its truly a minor act.

    Break a leg I say.

    Comments >>

    Vote NO on Genoa Township Millage Nov 5th

    By Republican Michigander, Section News
    Posted on Wed Oct 23, 2013 at 06:04:40 PM EST
    Tags: Roads, Millage, Taxes (all tags)

    Things like this make me wish I still had my voter registration in Genoa Township instead of Green Oak. I don't like what they plan to do to my old neighborhood.  My parents still live there and I still know most of the people there, many for 30+ years. This cuts across partisan lines here.

    If you want to fix the roads with a millage, actually fix the roads. Don't add a bunch of new projects, especially those not wanted by the residents of the street who live there.

    Genoa Township has a new projects road millage on the ballot November 5th. It raises taxes 1.5 mills for 15 years. There is a blog site up giving several reasons to defeat the millage. Protect Genoa Township Neighborhoods.

    Organized opposition has been formed to oppose this millage. Protect Genoa Township Neighborhoods. PO Box 1182. Brighton MI 48116. So far enough money has been raised for a direct mail piece to likely voting households. AV mailing is out and another one is on the way. With more money, we can have signs and other GOTV efforts to defeat this thing. I'm consulting on this pro bono. This is "family business" to me and I'm not taking any cut from this project.

    There's some legitimate arguments both ways on a road millage IF (and that's a big if) it fixes existing main roads.You can argue jurisdictional issues, taxes, double taxation if Lansing interests get their gas tax or sales tax through, and cost/benefits there, but roads aren't in good shape. However, don't waste my parent's money and worse - don't wreck their neighborhood

    (1 comment, 1273 words in story) Full Story

    A Message To Our Legislators - Beware False Choices

    Advocacy & Absolution

    By JGillman, Section News
    Posted on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 03:41:43 PM EST
    Tags: Michigan, Traverse City, Schools, Performing Arts Center, Millage, Luxury, Disconnect, Tax Sales, Advocacy, Taxpayers (all tags)

    Curiously, Michigan Capitol Confidential has a story about school millage advocacy.
    "In an effort to drum up support for an upcoming millage, Alcona Community Schools Superintendent Shawn Thornton is quoted in a local newspaper claiming teaching and support staff have been cut almost in half."
    Which was of course misleading.

    The first line says 'curiously' because today is the day I received the response from the SOS to my complaint of advocacy by TCAPS (Traverse City Area Public Schools) for its millage request.  It included the district's denial that they were violating campaign finance 57. It claimed they didn't know that there was a violation. But interestingly, as they were denying the charge of violation, it should be noted they significantly re-worked their literature when 'caught' by the original complaint and a subsequent newspaper article highlighting the complaint.

    Not knowing absolves everyone from fault .. right?

    Right up to that line without stepping over it is typical for school systems begging for more, but this was pretty clear.  The Superintendent approved the mailer, but then had it changed when caught. Then had their hired guns respond to the complaint.  Then another 'curious' event where the public relations manager resigns an $84k/yr job out of the blue.


    I have 10 days from the date of the SOS response to add anything.  The SOS response was dated Dec 21, 2012.  (Envelope shows to be mailed the 27th) I suppose the violation should/could stand on its own, but will an additional argument weigh on the process any?


    (2 comments) Comments >>

    New Anti-Millage Video

    By JGillman, Section Multimedia
    Posted on Thu Oct 11, 2012 at 07:39:10 PM EST
    Tags: Michigan, Traverse City, Schools, Performing Arts Center, Millage, Luxury, Disconnect, Tax Sales, Need, Taxpayers (all tags)

    While we are waiting for the Biden-Ryan debate, I figured you might like a little entertainment.

    As many of you may know, the Traverse City Area Public Schools have a board lacking any critical dissent.  There is no representative of the taxpayer present in each of its monthly, or special meetings.  Thus it should come as no surprise that a $26,000,000.00 Performing Arts Center (auditorium)is considered an essential educational tool.


    Comments >>

    Defeating A Millage

    By JGillman, Section News
    Posted on Mon Oct 01, 2012 at 10:12:22 PM EST
    Tags: Michigan, Traverse City, Schools, Performing Arts Center, Millage, Luxury, Disconnect, Tax Sales, Beasts of Burden, Taxpayers (all tags)

    Like everywhere else in the state of Michigan, leadership in the Traverse City Area Public Schools likes new and 'shiny' best.

    We're fighting a millage request that has an add on $26 million for a new performing arts center that will dwarf Interlochen. (you know .. the professionals) We're going all out up here to fight the latest pickpocketing by an irresponsible board, which has neglected its properties, in favor of building new. Literally.  In fact this statement:

    "Without the bond, TCAPS general fund will have to pay more than 3 million dollars per year to keep up with such demands. TCAPS operates a "general fund" that pays for the day-to-day operations of our school system, including student programming and employee salaries. A "capital" or "bond" fund supports the upkeep and improvement of infrastructure and cannot be used for day-to-day operations."
    so ..

    Essentially, they are saying "we don't know how to keep our stuff nice, and since you will pony up anyway .." A perfect example of our throwaway society I suppose.

    If you don't like this ..

    Then you trash it, and build this ..

    Fixing, remodeling, repair..  Out of the question.  Just replace.

    Curious on how we're fighting it?  Check THIS OUT

    (3 comments) Comments >>

    The Camel's Back

    By JGillman, Section News
    Posted on Wed Aug 22, 2012 at 09:54:05 PM EST
    Tags: Stephen Cousins, Kelly Hall, Michigan, Traverse City, Schools, Performing Arts Center, Millage, Luxury, Disconnect, Tax Sales, Beasts of Burden, Taxpayers (all tags)

    "The straw that broke that camel's back" perhaps.

    That could be the headline when the Traverse City Area Public Schools see their most recent request for millage fall flat on its fat face.

    TCAPS is looking for support to continue its Capital Infrastructure Improvement Program through authorization of bond sales that will generate $100 million over the next 10 years. According to TCAPS, the millage rate necessary to repay these bonds will remain below 4 mills.  Given the current rate of 3.1 mills, where did the other 29% increase come from?  The purpose of these requests must be physical asset based only, and this level of increase must surely be based on some specific need, right?

    Of course.  The need for a particular feel good wear around the neck kind of thing that says "look at me!"


    Continued below the fold

    (1 comment, 1318 words in story) Full Story

    Washtenaw County ISD Millage - There are Better Options

    By rickolson, Section News
    Posted on Sun Oct 18, 2009 at 07:44:58 PM EST
    Tags: property taxes, schools, WISD Regional Enhancement, millage (all tags)

    There are better options to balancing local school district's budgets than raising property taxes 2 mills through the proposed Washtenaw ISD regional enhancement millage on the ballot Nov. 3.

    (1 comment, 413 words in story) Full Story

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