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An Important Election

During the past 50 years, previous mayors (I was Crystal’s mayor for 8 years 2005 – 2012) built the financial health for Crystal residents. For over 50 years, money was put into reserve accounts which have generated several million dollars in interest income. This interest income is either spent for repairs, new equipment or put into places like the Utility fund for future projects.  Using reserve interest income keeps property taxes low.  When Crystal’s reserves disappear, so will the interest income and taxes will rise or services will fall and generally it is a combination of both.

Current city leadership spent $13.5 million in 2015 of cash for the new Public Works building. Here is how it breaks down, where the cash came from:

1. Major Building Replacement Fund: (Spent $10,300,000) .
Too bad if there is a problem at any other city owned building or site, the money is gone from this fund and they are not planning to replenish it.

2. 2014 General Fund Transfer to Major Building Replacement Fund (MBRF): (Spent $600,000).

3. Utilities Funds: (Spent $1,000,000)
Remember your 20 percent Utilities increase in 2015? This is the reason for the increase; money for the line repair went to pay for the new Public Works Building, so residents were charged to replace the money that was shifted into a different project.

4. Internal Fund Transfer/Load ( Spent $950,000)
I am not sure what we gave up and where this came from – but it came from other funds and I did not find the plan to pay it back.

In the past, bonds were sold for long-term investment projects such as buildings, roadways and the Crystal Pool. Bonds have never been used to fund the general budget or for operating funds.

Bonds are not evil, I believe spending down a savings account and its interest income is not healthy strategic financial planning. I would have bonded for at least $10 million dollars to preserve other accounts and income interest.  More than just the Building Fund money  was spent on this project and residents were never informed of this drastic change.  We were never told of the strategy to spend down our interest income funds.

The 2016 vote requires residents to pick how you want your tax dollars managed. If you want Crystal’s strong reserves spent, I may not be your candidate. I will preserve our reserve accounts so that we have the money we need to keep Crystal healthy. If you believe reserve accounts are important to the financial health of Crystal (or wisely spent with plans to replenish) then you will want to vote for me. If you want more details, please contact me.

Watch my web site for updates on other issues and the solutions I promote.