QUESTIONABLE MOTIVES: The condition of the City’s parks is no longer the top reason why individuals are not using the parks according to the Citizens Input Survey. Why then is the City proposing borrowing nearly 100% of our entire annual budget?
BLATANT OMISSIONS AND MARKETING TACTICS: Hundreds of thousands of our tax dollars were spent on marketing this Parks Bond. The approximate $25 Million we will pay in interest is not mentioned. The interest bring the total bill to approx. $65 Million. The language on the Brookhaven website heavily pushes for a yes vote on this bond. The City is not maintaining a professional distance from the issue.
MISLEADING INFORMATION: On Brookhaven's website, the marketing company has spun borrowing $40 million as a money maker. The illustration used under ‘Tax Payer Impact’ shows borrowing $40 million as a gain and states “property taxes decrease even with a Park Bond.”
Let's be clear. This is NOT a tax decrease. We ARE voting on a TAX INCREASE. The tax decrease comes from a separate bill we already voted on. It’s up to you to decide if the listed projects for the Park Bond are worthwhile.
QUESTIONABLE OVERSITE: External audits was REMOVED from the bond. Huge red flag! Third party and external audits is Finance 101 and an absolute must for any financial transaction of this size with multiple parties involved. No external audits = no bond oversite.
POOR BUDGETING AND PLANNING: Spinning this as a “Master Plan” to be covered by a $40 million bond is another red flag. There are 100 line-item capital improvements (+/- 50% of the Plan) in the Master Plan NOT covered by the borrowed funds. These are listed as 'future projects.' There is simply no way to complete the entire list for a mere $40 Million (+/- $25 Million interest). When and how would we pay for the other half of the projects? More Bonds?
MISPLACED PRIORITY: Renderings show a large amount of concrete and needless over-priced additions that would destroy the natural beauty of our parks. Why cut down the trees and cover the parks with concrete? Whose vision is this? Do we really want to borrow $40 Million to spend on THESE superfluous projects when we have others that are more important?