CITY OF MONTICELLO NOTIFIES PUBLIC OF IMPENDING 40 YEAR LOAN

June 20, 2017

City of Monticello officials have been in talks with USDA-Rural Development since early March about a new ‘megasite’ off  Hwy 11 South at Feldspar Rd.  according to open records received from the USDA. 

The most recent meeting was June 8 between USDA, Stone Workman, Doug White, and the City engineers for the project, Gresham-Smith Partners. 

Even though there have been at least two meetings, and possibly more with USDA, according to City officials, there are absolutely no documents available for the public to see. 

You can find as much information as we have been able to gather here:
CITY TO PURCHASE NEW MEGASITE—COST UNKNOWN TO PUBLIC—40 YEARS OF DEBT TO BUY

 Since the public has become aware of the Megasite proposal, the City ran the following “Public Notice” on page 11 of the June 15, 2017 edition of The Monticello News.  The notice was very small and next to the classified ads, making sure it would not get too much attention.

Will this be the ONLY notice the public gets that city of Monticello will apply for a 40 year loan (that is not mentioned in the notice)?  Why are the citizens being misled by using the word “funding” instead of loan? 

Will there be NO public input?  The talk we hear is that it is absolutely a done deal and the public’s only input will be their tax money to pay for it.

 

TWG

Citizens, be informed and stay informed!  Only by being informed, can the citizens understand what is being done and talked about, and then press our officials to make good decisions for everyone in Jasper County.  That is our goal with the Taxdogs blog.

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5 Responses to CITY OF MONTICELLO NOTIFIES PUBLIC OF IMPENDING 40 YEAR LOAN

  1. Sketchy Deals Have Consequences says:

    If the City can’t even afford it’s own police force, how can it justify taking on millions more in risky debt? There need’s to be more financially astute neutral eyes on this deal before City officials gets themselves and the taxpayers too deeply involved in this sketchy deal. See a similar case linked below.

    Commentary Bond fraud trial shows need to scrutinize municipal revenue generation
    The government’s theory of the case in St. Lawrence is that St. Lawrence and Troodler worked together to provide investors with a false sense of the town’s financial health so that they would positively rate and invest in the town’s bond offerings. In addition to allegedly lying to investors, the indictment and testimony at trial focused on a variety of problematic accounting practices.

    https://www.bondbuyer.com/opinion/bond-fraud-trial-shows-need-to-scrutinize-municipal-revenue-generation

    A Town’s ‘Creative Accounting’ Leads to a Fraud Conviction
    Such misrepresentation is common in municipal bookkeeping. Rarely do officials answer for it.

    After assuring a bond analyst in 2013 that the town’s budget was sound, Mr. St. Lawrence was caught on tape telling employees, with a laugh, that to make the numbers work “we’re going to have to all be magicians.” Prosecutors also accused him of recording on Ramapo’s books a proposed $3.1 million sale of town property, even though the deal eventually fell through because the land was a rattlesnake habitat.

    Mr. St. Lawrence’s lawyers argued that he did not profit from the transactions. They portrayed him as a well-meaning official guilty only of creative financing. But several witnesses painted a picture of Mr. St. Lawrence as a man who lied to raise money for a pet project and then tried to cover up the result.

    The former head of Ramapo’s development agency, N. Aaron Troodler, was charged with conspiring to commit securities fraud and pleaded guilty. He testified at Mr. St. Lawrence’s trial that the town had booked a $3.6 million payment from Mr. Troodler’s agency for rights to the stadium land, even though there had been no such transfer.

    Ramapo’s finances remain in disarray, and the town has struggled to pay its debts. But the acting supervisor says there’s no way to know how bad the situation is until officials complete a forensic audit. Meantime, Standard & Poor’s has withdrawn Ramapo’s credit rating because of the town’s unreliable financial statements.
    https://www.wsj.com/article_email/a-towns-creative-accounting-leads-to-a-fraud-conviction-1497650411-lMyQjAxMTA3NjEzNzUxMjczWj/

  2. What water needs? says:

    The City is trying to convince us that they are or soon will be in desperate need of water. Everyone in Jasper County is on the same aquifer. With 8 wells to suck water from to supply industry, what will be left for the citizens on wells? Thoughts are never given to the people here in Jasper County, only to the outsiders that don’t give a flip about anything but the tax breaks and fawning from the elite that are ready to give away our way of life.

  3. D.Shep says:

    Just another example of Officials doing what they want to do and getting away with it. When you look at the website of the company selling the property(Macallanre.com) it boasts of the miles of shoreline and what appears to be a very nice Hunting Lodge. Makes you wonder why a City/County body would purchase the property.

  4. Be very careful says:

    More property taken out of the tax digest, losing baldy needed property tax money. No doubt there will be tax incentives given to anyone considering relocating to this property. In the meantime, taxpayers will be making loan payments for many years to come.

    Companies are not breaking down doors to develop sites. Look at Stanton Springs, which is conveniently located right off I-20, yet, other than Shire, they have not been able to attract any other companies for years now.

  5. Enough With The Lies says:

    Hmmm…The Monticello News reported the loan and purchase of CKG properties as a done deal. Is this what the City of Monticello told the local news to report?
    Did the City of Monticello think the USDA loan guaranteed prior to application? Why? Because of past connections of former USDA officials Susan Holmes and Stone Workman with cronies still working in the USDA?
    When did the City of Monticello hire Gresham, Smith and Partners to plan this huge commercial development and at what cost? The City Council and Mayor of Monticello owes it not only to the citizens of Monticello , but all of Jasper County, to tell the truth about what is really being planned with the 705 acres south of the City limits sign.

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