JCWSA wants County to sign 50 year contract to keep them solvent

This letter was written last Monday night after the BOC meeting.  It is published in the Monticello News December 19, 2013.

Since this letter was written, financial statements and check registers indicate that the “default” JCWSA is worried about is not with USDA, but with the Bank of Monticello.  They owe the bank a TAN (tax anticipation note) of $40,000 that is due 12/31/13.  JCWSA only has $20,000 in the bank as of November 30; therefore, this appears to be the reason for their desperate attempt to get the taxpayers of the county to pay $20,000 immediately– to pay their bank note.

 

Dear Editor,

Tonight (December 9, 2013) once again, the BOC heard from JCWSA.  The only time the water authority ever appears before any BOC is to beg for money. 

JCWSA started off on the wrong foot and has stayed on the wrong foot for the last 13 years.  First they (a few citizens) went to the State Legislature after the citizens voted NO on a water authority.  Then the newly formed JCWSA signed papers with the USDA to get a loan to run water lines, stating they had 400 residential customers and 2 wholesale customers—one of those being Turtle Cove.  In actuality, they had less than 300 customers and had only 1 wholesale customer –Charlie Elliott Wildlife.  So, one can argue the legitimacy of the USDA loan documents since they were based on false information.

Then sometime, somewhere, but not in a public meeting on 7/1/02 (the date of the resolution), the BOC Chair Jerry Crow signed a Resolution saying the county would pay the JCWSA for fire hydrants until 2045.  The resolution was never legitimate because it was never approved in a public meeting by the entire BOC, much less discussed in public.  (This resolution was signed the same year Bear Creek Reservoir was also being discussed in secret.)

One of the reasons JCWSA wanted this resolution is based on their own “corrected minutes” of 7/2/02; in those minutes they acknowledged that to break even (supposedly with 400 customers) they had to charge $51 per month as a base fee.  Instead JCWSA passed a resolution setting the base fee at $24.50 per month and then said the BOC had passed the “fire hydrant resolution” to make up the difference.

JCWSA members took this bogus resolution with them to have the JCWSA REVENUE bonds approved by a judge and added it as collateral for the loan.  This collateral was unknown to the public as it was never approved or discussed in public.

Remember, revenue bonds are supposed to be paid by revenues from the system—not taxes—as set up in not only the State Constitution, but also in the State Codes of Georgia. 

Then in 2005 a “fire tax district” was set up by the BOC to help the JCWSA make ends meet.  This is because the JCWSA always says, “if they can just get a certain amount of money, everything will be ok.”  The problem is, “this amount of money” is never enough and they always need more.  Please note that the fire tax district brings in over $46,000 a year for the JCWSA; more than the hydrant resolution would bring in.  The people along the water line are the ones paying this tax.

This fire tax district had a sunset provision in it, and it died at the end of 2008.  Then in 2009 it was approved again, but the taxes would not be collected until 2010.  Both the BOC and JCWSA knew there would be no tax collected in 2009.  In their continuing need for money, JCWSA decided they would just go back to the old hydrant resolution and say the county owed them for that, even though the annual appropriation in 2009 was voted down by the BOC.  The resolution says “subject to annual review and appropriation,” but JCWSA doesn’t think that is the correct interpretation of the sentence.

Dan Roberts, the county attorney in 2002, who happened to also be JCWSA’s attorney, must have written this resolution, and would seemingly know what annual approval and appropriation meant since he was heavily involved in the budget process each year.

It is time JCWSA admits that they started off with a questionable client base and have done little to increase that client base to bring in more revenue.  Instead they have spent their time and money browbeating each and every BOC and threatening lawsuits and saying the BOC cannot let them fail or the county won’t be able to get grants, etc.  This is just plain not true.

The latest plan submitted by JCWSA’s attorney at the BOC meeting is to have the BOC give the authority $20,000 immediately to “keep the water authority from default,” and then $10,000 a year until “the county is paid up.”  The figure “owed” is now around $54,000 according to JCWSA.  The attorney said this would get JCWSA back on its feet and then everything would be fine.  Of course, anyone that has followed this continuous cycle of asking for money by JCWSA knows it will never be enough, and JCWSA will be back asking for money in the very near future with some new twist as to why the county owes them money.

The City of Monticello, City of Shady Dale, Alcovy Shores area, and Turtle Cove all have their own water systems and people served by these systems are already paying high prices for that water.  The rest of the county residents have wells and are taxed on those wells every year.

Why should any of us have to pay to bail out JCWSA with our tax money when we voted it down in the first place, watched land speculators control where the lines were run, and most of all, get no service from it?

See a copy of the contract JCWSA wants the county to sign here.    JCWSA proposed contract with BOC so county will pay on JCWSA debt for 50 years

Please send us your comments.

 

 

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4 Responses to JCWSA wants County to sign 50 year contract to keep them solvent

  1. lrshort says:

    We incessantly hear those that profit off the collective(i.e. the sheeple) blathering on and on about the team, but yet we never see pomp and puffery step up and take one for the team.
    No, instead the great self-appointed planners always want to the team to bail their poorly wrought schemes out when the fail ,which is inevitable what happens with most.schemes.
    Why would taxpayers of Jasper County want to purchase a total failure of a water company which hasn’t even 400 customers after nearly 14 years in business?
    To blacken the bottom line of those that have all the mouth in the game,but never any skin?

    Maybe Commissioners Trammell and Salmon along with those that ginned up this flop of a water authority would like to invest some their skin in the game ?

    To quotes with links worth reading.

    Only incompetent people love the team, and they love it because it makes it harder to discover their incompetence.
    Gavin McInnes at takimag.com
    http://takimag.com/article/teamwork_is_overrated_gavin_mcinnes/print#axzz2oCbm6EDI

    Since the core functions of banks can now be performed by cheap processors and software, we can get rid of the entire parasitic banking sector, once and for all. But what about investment banking? That too can be automated. What about wealth management? In a world where index funds beat 96% of money managers over a long time-frame, that too can be automated.

    But what about the tens of millions of dollars in campaign contributions politicos skim from the bankers? Now we finally reach the real reason why the parasitic banking sector is allowed to exist, even though it has outlived its purpose and value: the political class of parasites benefits immensely from the banking sector’s giant state-rigged skimming machine.

    An automated banking utility has no need for parasitic bankers or politicos or indeed, a central bank. The only legitimate regulatory function of the state is to enforce transparency; beyond that, its actions are all subsidies of one sort or another of politically powerful constituencies at the expense of the real economy’s productive people, communities and enterprises.

    Charles Hugh Smith
    http://www.oftwominds.com/blogdec13/banking12-13.html

  2. Lynn Short says:

    The lines are definitely blurred as to whether the Board of Commissioners year end drive to force Jasper County taxpayers into funding an insolvent water authority is really about being able to service the debt held by the USDA or the loan held by their local lender.

    There is an old adage that states given a hammer a carpenter will go in search of a nail. The same truism can be applied to the banking industry.

    It is no secret that various county and state appointed econ/dev committees are fully stocked with members of the banking profession and these committees oversee billions of dollars of public funds and until recently with very little public oversight. See here: http://www.goodjobsfirst.org/states/georgia

    To be fair, it can easily be argued that bankers should have the commanding role in all public financing decisions, because they understand the intricacies of the finance business and are most capable of deciding the best type of debt instrument to apply to the funding needs of any particular project.

    And, rightly so, but the magic spells finance wizards cast to conjure esoteric debt instruments hold no sway of influence over the animal spirits that control the free markets. (See mises.org)

    As matter of fact, there exists irrefutable evidence that when it comes to calling markets finance pimps are the worst in the business . Not only has the banking industry succeeded in hanging unnecessary debt burdens around the necks of local,national and global economies. but have nearly choked the life out of their own business as well. See evidence here: Bailout Total: $29.616 Trillion Dollars

    http://www.ritholtz.com/blog/2011/12/bailout-total-29-616-trillion-dollars/

    *Unofficial Problem Bank List Dec 13, 2013*

    http://cr4re.com/PBL12132013.html

    Yet, regardless of the poor performance track record of the finance industry resulting in tens of trillions of dollars of taxpayer funded bailouts, there has been a sycophantic cult built around the self-appointed pickers of market winners and losers, utilizing catchy names and populist phrases usually beginning with ONE or TEAM designed to unify the ignorant lackeys into a cohesive political unit which can then be used to shun or bludgeon political opponents into submission, which brings me to my point.

    The creation of a Jasper County Water and Sewer Association was first conceived by the well financed politicos to be a county funded entity and put to a vote via referendum as such. The county voters in their collective wisdom would have none of it and voted the ill-conceived idea down.

    But, that didnt stop the We-Know-Best gang. They used their financial and political ties to convince former Rep.Curtis Jenkins to legislate the public corporation into existence, declaring that JCWSA needed no monetary assistance from the county and would be a stand alone entity.

    That was 1999.Fast forward 14 years and JCWSA still hasnt acquired the 400 customers pledged to secure the loans from the USDA.The easy credit has run out and the water authoritys poorly played gig is up. Their fate is now in the hands of the Jasper County BoC who will soon decide whether Jasper County taxpayers will resume funding of the water authority via contractual agreement or simply refuse any further taxpayer funding of the water authority thereby forcing it into bankruptcy court and receivership.

    The evidence is clear. Markets are not created by debt instruments. No amount of political power bought nor debt financed can create a market for a product that is neither necessary nor desired. The creation of JCWSA was simply reckless gamble using other peoples money. I wonder how reckless the creators of JCWSA would have been if they had been using their own money or would it have been created at all?

    It should be noted that two of the five commissioners on the Jasper County BoC served on the JCWSA board with one serving as chair.I don’t see how a yes vote for further funding of the JCWSA by either of these former water authority board members can be anything but tainted by their former association with the water authority board.

    To close this missive up, in my first encounter with the arrogant leadership of the JCWSA, I was promptly informed by the board chair that We get what we want and after years of observing their overt displays of pomposity masked by deceit and mingled with the complicity of sycophants and would-be market makers, I sincerely doubt theyll ever get what they want, but I certainly hope they get exactly what they deserve.

  3. Larry Evans says:

    I think the time has come to let the Courts settle this once and for all.

    • taxdogs says:

      That would be interesting considering the county attorney Jim Alexander is the employer of the chair of the JCWSA, Mary Alice Carter. But conflicts of interest have never bothered many people in Jasper County.

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