By: Diane Benjamin
Previous story based on the Budget Session documents: https://blnnews.com/2020/01/28/normal-expect-property-tax-increases-to-continue/
It has always annoyed me when Koos and company claim Normal’s debt isn’t a problem. They think it isn’t because they are NOT looking at the big picture, they only look at what payments will be required every year.
They don’t care about the total cost of borrowing: INTEREST
They don’t care about bonds they are only paying interest on.
They are looking at the total payments every year and saying we can do that!
Would you buy a million dollar house if you could finance it for 40 years? The principle is the same, you can afford the payments and die before it’s paid off. The people who inflicted Normal’s debt will be long gone before it’s paid off.
Mark Peterson (former City Manager) is gone with a monument to his accomplishments in Uptown. Other Trustees are gone, the mayor WILL BE GONE. They will pay no price for the debt they created.
Go back to the Budget Session documentation: Normal 1-16-2020 budget session
PDF page 217:
Now go to PDF page 218 for a list of all bonds outstanding. The Town did a two page report which makes it hard to read, the Principle and Interest payments are on the next page. I cut the two pages together for you:
Do you pay interest only on a large part of your debt? All those highlighted areas in the first column are bonds the Town is paying NO principal on. Uptown will need another revitalization before it is paid for.
Obviously there is a problem when more interest is paid in a year than goes to decreasing the debt! (See the totals)
What are each of the bonds for?
Good question, I don’t know the answer because I can’t find descriptions. It is safe to assume the majority of the General Fund Bonded Debt is for Uptown.
This morning I heard a discussion on the radio about what kids need to know but frequently aren’t taught. Many callers mentioned debt and credit cards. Others mentioned paying extra on your house payment to pay it off sooner. Nobody mentioned how to bury yourself in debt to get nice stuff because only the payment matters.
The Town of Normal is like your dead-beat nephew who convinces kind-hearted granny his financial problems aren’t his fault. He then steals granny’s money. The Town of Normal thinks you are granny! That is why your taxes go up every year.
I’ve got other stories based on the Budget Session document. I’m going to wait a week or so to let these two stories sink in.
Share the stories or your friends and neighbors in Normal will never know the truth.