Saturday, February 28, 2015

A Landfill Land Story

From the archives:
In July 1981, the city passed a resolution declaring its intent to appropriate four acres of land that was part of the Stuckey farm near Nelson Ave. for the purpose of continued operation of the municipal garbage disposal plant.
Subsequent to this declaration of intent to take the property by eminent domain, the city entered into negotiations with the Stuckey family, including Roy Joe, to purchase the entire 125 acre farm.

In August 1983, then city councilman Rodger Borror was one of the primary negotiators for the city. According to information in a Stuckey family letter to Mr. Borror, the city promised to make part of the farm a City park and use another part of the farm for landfill purposes. From the letter;, “In any regard, I wish to pursue the idea that you proposed to Margaret and Roy Joe [Stuckey] of setting aside a substantial portion of the farm for park use bearing the Stuckey name...........June E.Stuckey”
On August 5, 1983 the Stuckey family gives the city an option to purchase the 125 acres for $312,500 and in September of that year the city exercised the option to purchase.
The “contract to purchase” was agreed to in November of 1983 between the city, the buyer, and the Stucheys, the sellers. Included in the contract is the statement., “Park Buyer expresses its intention to use part of the premises for park purposes. Buyer further agrees to associate the Stuckey family name in connection therewith.”
Then Mayor Moyer entered into the agreement. City council then passed an ordinance stating that the city will procure bond financing of $310,00, “for the purpose of paying part of the cost of acquiring real estate for solid waste disposal and park and recreational purposes..........”
In November of 1985 city council passed a Stuckey farm refinancing resolution that included the words,” the purpose is to acquire [continue to pay for] real estate for solid waste disposal, sewage disposal and park and recreational uses....
In the past about 60 acres was being rented for farm use but now sits idle Several thousand dollars per year in cash rent is being left on the table.
Currently less than 60 acres of the 125 is being used for landfill purposes.
Thanks to Laura Curliss for much of this information.

Posted by Paul Hunter contact at

Monday, February 23, 2015

Gas Aggregation Update

Based on the present Vectren Source individual contract price of 65.9, a consumer using 200 units (100 cubic feet CCF is a unit) would save $13 for February. I estimate that the typical aggregation customer will save $100 to $150 per year on gas costs. Although this is well below the $300 annual savings we realized from electrical aggregation last year it is equal to a three mill property tax reduction.

Original post:
If you declined to join the Wilmington natural gas aggregation supplier, Volunteer Energy earlier this year it's not too late to do so. Take a look at your Vectren bill and find, under “gas supplier detail”, the name of your supplier and the price per 100 cubic feet (Ccf). If the supplier is Volunteer Energy you are under the aggregation plan. If it is some other supplier such a Vectren Source Choice check the price per Ccf and if it is over .55 (cents) call Volunteer at 800 977-8374 for their current price and for details on how to change suppliers.
Based on current market prices Volunteer should be able to provide natural gas at around .50 per Ccf.
An internet check of current potential non aggregation suppliers shows prices from a low of .579 to a high of .729 per CCF.

Paul Hunter

Can You Say, The Real Job Creators?

I knew you could. We can give tax breaks to all corporations and businesses but it would be in vain if consumers don't buy the products of those companies.
The below item from the Dayton Daily News is an example of above claim.

Walmart pay raise will boost Ohio’s economy, experts say

nationwide, but experts say the biggest impact will be in states like Ohio, where the job market is dominated by low-wage workers who typically spend any new-found earnings.
What we know from several studies about consumption among low-wage workers is that every dollar that goes into the pockets of these workers goes back into the economy and that added consumption usually has a positive impact on he economy in terms of consumer demand and job growth,” said Yannet Lathrop, a researcher and policy analyst at the National Employment Law Project.
Link to full article:

Paul Hunter

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Do Ohio farm owners want it both ways?

Do Ohio farm owners want it both ways?
All property owners pay taxes on values for the past year(s). As an example if my home was valued at $100,000 for the last couple of years I will pay taxes this year on that value even if the home is now valued at $80,000. At the next appraisal I will pay on the lower value.
Likewise the farmer was enjoying low taxes when land earnings and values were high and he now has to pay for those good year(s). At the next appraisal his taxes will decline.

Paul Hunter  

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Concerned About The Voters Response?

It appears that the majority of Wilmington City Council members do not want to give the voters of Wilmington a voice in fixing the pathetic condition of their city's streets. I can only guess that they fear that a five dollar a month levy will pass and they will be blamed by the minority for raising taxes.
It is difficult for the members to gauge the wishes of the voters because the majority of them received less than 20% support from eligible voters in the last council election.
Paul Hunter

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Regressive Tax By Any Name

A regressive sales tax by any other name is still regressive.
In effect it takes money out of job creating consumers pockets.
..........before the Bank of Japan had a chance to prove its credibility, Japanese policymakers made a critical policy mistake: They increased the consumption tax—a value-added tax (VAT) as it is officially called—from 5 percent to 8 percent, the first increase since 1997. If your goal is to get consumers spending money again, it’s easy to see why raising taxes on them is such bad policy. It gives them less money to spend. The effects of the taxwere felt immediately after it took effect on April 1. In the second quarter of the year—from April 1 to June 30—the economy contracted at an annualized rate of 7.3 percent. “The hope was that all the other stimulus they were providing would offset and wash out the impact of the VAT,” Zandi said. “That hope is not coming to fruition. They made a big mistake with that. They did a similar thing back in the late 1990s. It worked out just as badly, if not worse.”
In October 2015, the VAT is scheduled to rise once again. Economists now believe that Abe will delay that increase or postpone it indefinitely, having learned from this tax hike............

From The Economist
Architects of Abenomics had issued dire warnings against raising the consumption tax from 5% to 8% in April. The increase, aimed at improving Japan’s parlous finances, was decided in 2012 under a previous government. As in 1997, the last time politicians dared to raise the tax, consumer spending has wilted.

Posted byPaul Hunter (contact at 

Friday, February 13, 2015

And The Beat Goes On

Kasich, I want to further reduce taxes on all Ohioans

Kasich wants sales tax hike,

Budget includes $2.5 billion sales-tax hike while some adults on Medicaid would have to start paying premiums for their health care

Ohio Auditor Dave Yost suggests raising hunting, fishing fees

Ohio Auditor Dave Yost recommended yesterday that the state charge more for fishing and hunting permits and increase the rates for overnight stays in campgrounds and cabins.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

County Government's Take Another Hit

Remember the slogan, “Vote for casino gambling it will replace state revenue sharing cuts to local governments?”
The reality: The state of Ohio expects casino tax revenue to drop by 18 percent over the next three years, according to Gov. John Kasich’s budget proposal released last week [2/6/15].
Reminds one of the state's promise that the 2005 commercial activity (CAT) tax would replace the discontinued personal property tax revenue for local governments. To date the city of Wilmington's general fund has not received a dime of CAT revenue needed to replace the lost property tax revenue.
Paul Hunter

Monday, February 9, 2015

How Ohio Attacks The Wealth Gap

By increasing sales taxes again on the consumer/job creator while continuing to slash income taxes on the already under-taxed well to do That's how.
See the previous post, "The Amateur Economist" for a definition of a regressive sales tax
Paul Hunter

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Wilmington Streets Update

To become aware and and involved or be unaware and silent. Your choice.
A special city council meeting will convene on Thursday, February 12 at 6:30 PM, on the second floor of the city building. for the purpose of deciding the following:
a. Do our streets need repair action in the near term?
b. How much will the required maintenance and repair cost?
c. How much continuous new revenue will be required to catch up on street repair and institute a long term prevention program?
d. If it is decided that new revenue will be required, what form and what amount of taxation will the voters be asked to decide on next November? A property or an earnings tax increase.

It has been suggested to council that a dedicated two mill property tax increase would meet the revenue needs and also spread the costs to all users of our streets and bridges. This levy, if passed by the voters, would generate an estimated $450,000 per year. That annual revenue could be used to finance a short term bond to bring the streets to good repair and then maintain them over the long term. This levy, that could not be used for purposes other than streets, would cost the average home owner less than $6 per month. A senior born prior to 1949 would pay $4.50 per month. As the economy continues to recover and total city property values increase, the millage would automatically decrease.

Some in the city administration prefer to ask the voters for a, non dedicated, quarter percent earnings tax increase. This increase would produce an estimated $1 million per year. This tax would transfer the responsibility for streets that everybody uses on to wage earners and we retired seniors, that already receive a property tax exemption would get away free. Caution, by being non dedicated, this revenue could be diverted to other non related uses by future city administrations and councils.
Note: City property tax rates declined by two mills this year.
If you are unable to attend the meeting let city council members know your opinion.

382-2709 (H)

(937) 218-6025 (C)

(910) 987-6198 (C)
937) 725-3619 (C)

(937) 382-4643 (H)

(937) 218-6356 (C)

(937) 728-6557 (C)

Paul Hunter

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Citizens Need To Be Aware

Attend a few meetings and see how your concerns are dealt with! Let the city fathers and others know you care. Speak up at the end of each meeting.
Paul Hunter
The News Journal does publish these agendas

Permit from OHIO CVS STORES LLC dba CVS PHARMACY 6098, 1523 Rombach Avenue Wilmington, Ohio

The Amateur Economist

Generally accepted economic definitions.
Progressive tax rate system:
A tax that takes a larger percentage from the income of high-income earners than it does from low-income individuals. The United States income tax is considered progressive: in 2010, individuals who earned up to $8,375 fell into the 10% tax bracket, while individuals earning $373,650 or more fell into the 35% tax bracket. Basically, taxpayers are broken down into categories based on taxable income; the more one earns, the more taxes they will have to pay once they cross the benchmark cut-off points between the different tax bracket levels.

Flat tax rate system:
A system that applies the same tax rate to every taxpayer regardless of income bracket. A flat tax applies the same tax rate to all taxpayers, with no deductions or exemptions allowed.
A regressive tax rate system: Also called a “Fair Tax” by its proponents.
Some examples include gas tax and a sales tax. A simplified example: If a person has $10,000 of income and must pay $1,000 sales tax on an auto purchase, this represents 10% of the person's income. However, if the person has $100,000 of income, this $1,000 tax only represents 1% of that person's income. Regressive means that those least able to pay the tax must pay a higher portion of income than those more able.
Most, if not all developed countries, have some form of progressive tax system. While the system requires periodic revision and simplification it seems to be the best method to prevent wealth accruing to the few and the lowering the standard of living for the many. It helps to grow the job creator* aspect of consumer driven economies.
Flat tax proposals have been offered by some political candidates as an alternative to a progressive system. In order for such a tax to be revenue neutral, (no loss or gain in government revenue), the tax rate selected would have to be increased for the bottom half of earners and decreased for top earners. The job creating consumer would have less purchasing power under this concept.
Efforts to enact a national sales tax, also known as the”Fair Tax” has waned. The tax rates required to match existing revenue would be very damaging for the job creating working class consumer. Most individual states levy a sales tax on many consumer goods and services. At present Ohio has a combination of a progressive income tax and sales tax. The current Ohio governor is tending toward the elimination of the income tax. Ohio has to maintain a balanced state budget where expenditures must match revenue. In this poster's opinion the result of such a shift will require a sales tax rate increase and an expansion of items taxed. The result will be a spiral of higher priced goods and services and a lowered ability to consume those goods and services.
*If the demand for cars and widgets declines will the car manufacturer and widget maker invest in new plant and equipment? Will new jobs be created if consumption declines?

Paul Hunter

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Wilmington Streets

City Streets Update
Wilmington City Council streets committee met on January 28 to develop a plan to finance needed street repair.
The following items and areas, in no particular order, were discussed.
The street department chief stated that the cost to catch up on delayed repair and maintenance could be as much as $1 million. He also mentioned that the recent annexation of a deteriorating, two plus miles of Airborne Rd. will be a major cost driver.
The service director said that the state will pave Truesdell (SR730) in 2016 but that engineering and matching funds would obligate the city for more than a $200,000 contribution. The sidewalk from Randolph St. and Holmes school will be a part of the that project but will not add to the cost.
The Mayor suggested a ¼% or more earnings tax increase that would generate, at least, an estimated $1 million. He also mentioned that after needed repairs were paid for, the excess revenue could be used for other city needs.
At the meeting this poster suggested that a 2 mill dedicated property tax would generate $450,000 per year. That revenue could then be leveraged for a bond to complete the needed catch up repairs and then used to finance a cyclic maintenance schedule.
Members of the committee made comments concerning the public's willingness to vote for any tax increase.
The city treasurer opined that since he didn't pay income tax he would support the income tax option but he didn't think the voters would approve any tax increase. A member of the committee stated that his contacts have indicated they would not vote for a levy. Another member wanted to use the budget carryover to finance at least a part of the repair costs.
Noting that the no one knew for certain if the voters would vote for any new tax or which form of tax they might approve this poster made this suggestion. The Wilmington College business department is willing to conduct a voter survey to get a sense of the public's attitude. This concept worked well for the curbside recycling project.
The meeting adjourned with the agreed up decision to hold a special council meeting to further expore the the issues

Paul Hunter

Shocking Information

Not Right Here In Clinton County?
When I reread Judge Rudduk's “need a drug court” column in the News Journal I was skeptical of the claim, “that since 2012, nearly forty individuals have lost their lives in Clinton County as a result of a drug overdose”. I was also surprised that, if true, this was not a major
news worthy item. I checked with the county health department and confirmed the judge's information.
The information was even more surprising than I had realized. In the ten year period through 2013 94 overdose deaths were recorded. The number of deaths in 2012, (17) and 2013, (14),surpassed the previous highest year, 2004, with 13 fatalities.
Paul Hunter