Friday, May 29, 2015

Ohio's Solution To Income Inequality

Information based on 2014 data.

Comparison of Ohio Income Tax Payments for Selected Taxable Income

taxable Income 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015          savings from 2011
$20,000 347 343 313 320 317 $30
$60,000 1865 1853 1696 1709 1691 $174
$100,000 3617 3594 3289 3311 3275 $342
$500,000 26807 26748 24474 24448 24180 $2,627
$1,000,000 56432 56373 51579 51408 50845 $5,587

Monday, May 25, 2015

Minimum Wage Update A Tough Sell?

Try this.
The FLSA establishes minimum wage, overtime pay, recordkeeping, and youth employment standards affecting employees in the private sector and in Federal, State, and local governments. Covered nonexempt workers are entitled to a minimum wage of not less than $7.25 per hour effective July 24, 2009. Overtime pay at a rate not less than one and one-half times the regular rate of pay is required after 40 hours of work in a workweek.

The Fair Labor Standards Act constitutes a step in the direction of communism, bolshevism, fascism, and Nazism.
The National Association of Manufacturers. 1938.

The Fair Labor Standards Act] will destroy small industry….these ideas are the product of those whose thinking is rooted in an alien philosophy and who are bent upon the destruction of our whole constitutional system and the setting up of a red-labor communistic despotism upon the ruins of our Christian civilization.
Representative Edward Cox (D-GA). 1938.

The Fair Labor Standards Act would create chaos in business never yet known to us.... It sets an all-time high in crackpot legislation. Let me make it very clear that I am not opposed to the social theory.... No decent American citizen can take exception to this attitude. What I do take exception to is any approach to a solution of this problem which is utterly impractical and in operation would be much more destructive than constructive to the very purposes which it is designed to serve.
U.S. Representative Arthur Phillip Lamneck (D-OH).

Forty years later, a distinguished news commentator asked incredulously: "My God! 25 cents an hour! Why all the fuss?" President Roosevelt expressed a similar sentiment in a "fireside chat" the night before the signing. He warned: "Do not let any calamity-howling executive with an income of $1,000 a day, ...tell you...that a wage of $11 a week is going to have a disastrous effect on all American industry."2 In light of the social legislation of 1978, Americans today may be astonished that a law with such moderate standards could have been thought so revolutionary.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Labor Wake Up Call

Does any serious person believe that the so called right to work laws (RTW) are anything other than, at the outset, the right to freeload by non paying fellow workers. Of course the idea is to eventually starve the unions into oblivion. If you think the Koch brothers and their legislative arm, ALEC, are seriously interested in the workers right to choose I have a bridge in Brooklyn I will sell you.

It's not surprising that nineteen of the 25 states with right to work laws are ranked in the bottom twenty five in household income. Our neighbors, Indiana and Michigan, have RTW laws and are the among the poorest states. The poor old Mississippi workers have the right to choose to work in the poorest income state in the country.

Monday, May 18, 2015

We don't Need No Stinking Training Or Permits

From the Hillsboro paper.
A Leesburg woman is in stable condition after being flown to a Kettering hospital on Thursday following what’s reported as an accidental gunshot, according to Highland County Sheriff Donnie Barrera.

Barrera reported that at shortly before 6:30 p.m. Thursday his office received a call from the 1100 block of SR 72 from the daughter of a wounded individual. The daughter said she came home and found her mother lying in the yard with a gunshot wound to her left side.

Barrera said that deputies and emergency personnel with North Joint Fire and Ambulance District were called to the scene. Upon arrival 52-year-old Janice Jones was found lying in the yard.

The sheriff said Jones said she had been out in the yard shooting and fell into a hole, and when she was trying to get up the gun went off, a bullet striking her in her ribs and exiting out her back. He said emergency personnel on the scene believed the bullet to have possibly passed through a lung.
Posted by Paul Hunter

Starve The Beast

This phrase, coined by special interest conservative politicians sounds good on paper. Cut taxes and the government will shrink to the point that the nation will become a loose association of state governments. Starve the state government beasts and the states become a loose association of local governments. Starve the local government beasts and minimal services such as fire, and police departments, streets maintenance sanitation and recreation suffer.
The congress has succeeded in starving the infrastructure beast to the point that many of our bridges and highways are in critical need of repair. Airports and air traffic control systems are nearing third world status. Some commentators blame the Philadelphia train crash on a starved safety budget.
The research and development function of the beast that was once considered to be the best in the world is slowly eroding. For example the National Institute of Health (NIH) reports that its ability to support vital research at more than 2,500 universities and organizations across the nation is reeling from a decline in funding that threatens our health, our economy, and our standing as the world leader in biomedical innovation.
After 10 years of essentially flat budgets eroded by the effects of inflation, and now precipitously worsened by the impact of sequestration (an automatic, across-the-board 5.5% cut in NIH support), NIH’s purchasing power has been cut by almost 25% compared to a decade ago.
- See more at:

Closer to home the starving state of Ohio beast has balanced its budget and cut taxes. In doing so the state has starved schools and local governments where the fiscal rubber meets the road. Can you say local tax levies?

Paul Hunter

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Father Knows Best

Some Public Relations accomplishments that would put the Mad Men of Madison Avenue to shame.
“Uncle Joe" Stalin was a kind and caring leader of the Russian people.
It was in the best interests of poor white boys of the Civil War South to give up their lives in defense of the Southern aristocracy's privileges.
The evangelical pulpits, Wall St. money changers and corporate plutocrats successful effort to convince workers that organizing is not in their best interests.

Add your own to the list. 
Paul Hunter  

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Draw Muhammad Contest

I nominate Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer as best ISIS recruiters of the year.

Their legal but stupid and purposeless blasphemy of a religious faith other than their own via the “draw Muhammad” contest makes them deserving of the honor.
Paul Hunter

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Enable The Voters.

I agree with some Wilmington city council candidates and the Mayor elect when they promise that they will not raise revenue by tax levies. It's an easy agreement to make but it it is also an empty promise. State law prohibits Council from raising taxes. Only the city's voters can do so via the ballot box. Council can enable the voters by putting the issue on the ballot and letting the public exercise their right to choose. Of course council can also deny that right by refusing to act.

Paul Hunter  

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Mr. Speaker

Our man Cliff: From a Columbus Dispatch interview. Published 05/06/15

Punts on “right to work law”
Right to work
Rosenberger said his House district strongly supports anti-union right-to-work legislation.
We tried Senate Bill 5,” he said of the 2011 anti-union law that was resoundingly overturned by voters. “The fact is, if anything should happen with right to work, it should be done by a citizens’ initiative. Would I support that initiative? Yes, I would.”
Kicks the can 0n gay marriage:

Gay marriage

Rosenberger said he would attend a gay friend’s wedding, but asked if gay marriage should be legal in Ohio, he said: “The answer has been determined in the state of Ohio. It is what it is, and we’ll see what the courts say about it.”
Little interest in online voter registration

Voter registration

As for online voter registration, a priority issue for Secretary of State Jon Husted, Rosenberger said he is not for or against it. “It’s just not something I want to move quickly on.”
Supports increasing term limits but waffles

Term limits

Rosenberger supports an expansion but noted, “I don’t know that the environment is conducive enough for the voters to support that right now.”
Wants to make it more difficult for voters to amend the state's constitution

I think we’ve got to look at how do we make it harder to amend the Constitution,” he [Rosenberger] said

Posted by Paul Hunter contact at

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Relevant Relook On Race

The history of slavery, calculated and spontaneous bigotry, economic exploitation and Jim Crow law in our nation, existed in some form from 1675 to 1964. Some might claim that only the form has changed since then.
It's a fool's errand to believe that, after nearly 300 years of living in a subjugated status, all of that cultural baggage could be eliminated in a generation. The effects of that culture on both the exploited and the exploiters will be with us for many many more years. The only hope is that a movement arises that will bring out our better selves with understanding and empathy that will supplant hate, distrust and fear. My sense is that the younger generation is the best hope for that transformation.
Below is a snippet of that history that we will have to face if we are to understand the cause of today's problems.
Paul Hunter
In 1898, in Lake Cormorant, Mississippi, a black man was hanged from a telephone pole. And in Weir City, Kansas. And in Brookhaven, Mississippi. And in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where the hanged man was riddled with bullets. In Danville, Illinois, a black man's throat was slit, and his dead body was strung up on a telephone pole. Two black men were hanged from a telephone pole in Lewisburg, West Virginia. And two in Hempstead, Texas, where one man was dragged out of the courtroom by a mob, and another was dragged out of jail.
A black man was hanged from a telephone pole in Belleville, Illinois, where a fire was set at the base of the pole and the man was cut down half-alive, covered in coal oil, and burned. While his body was burning the mob beat it with clubs and cut it to pieces.
Lynching, the first scholar of the subject determined, is an American invention. Lynching from bridges, from arches, from trees standing alone in fields, from trees in front of the county courthouse, from trees used as public billboards, from trees barely able to support the weight of a man, from telephone poles, from streetlamps, and from poles erected solely for that purpose. From the middle of the nineteenth century to the middle of the twentieth century, black men were lynched for crimes real and imagined, for whistles, for rumors, for "disputing with a white man," for "unpopularity," for "asking a white woman in marriage," for "peeping in a window."
.........More than two hundred antilynching bills were introduced to the U.S. Congress during the twentieth century, but none were passed. Seven presidents lobbied for antilynching legislation, and the House of Representatives passed three separate measures, each of which was blocked by the Senate.
In Pine Bluff, Arkansas, a black man charged with kicking a white girl was hanged from a telephone pole. In Longview, Texas, a black man accused of attacking a white woman was hanged from a telephone pole. In Greenville, Mississippi, a black man accused of attacking a white telephone operator was hanged from a telephone pole. "The negro only asked time to pray." In Purcell, Oklahoma, a black man accused of attacking a white woman was tied to a telephone pole and burned. "Men and women in automobiles stood up to watch him die.".............
In Shreveport, Lousiana, a black man charged with attacking a white girl was hanged from a telephone pole. "A knife was left sticking in the body." In Cumming, Georgia, a black man accused of assaulting a white girl was shot repeatedly, then hanged from a telephone pole. In Waco, Texas, a black man convicted of killing a white woman was taken from the courtroom by a mob and burned, then his charred body was hanged from a telephone pole.
A postcard was made from the photo of a burned man hanging from a telephone pole in Texas, his legs broken off below the knee and his arms curled up and blackened. Postcards of lynchings were sent out as greetings and warnings until 1908, when the postmaster general declared them unmailable. "This is the barbecue we had last night," reads one.
"If we are to die," W. E. B. DuBois wrote in 1911, "in God's name let us perish like men and not like bales of hay." And "if we must die," Claude McKay wrote ten years later, "let it not be like hogs."
In Pittsburg, Kansas, a black man was hanged from a telephone pole, cut down, burned, shot, and stoned with bricks. "At first the negro was defiant," the New York Times reported, "but just before he was hanged he begged hard for his life."
In the photographs, the bodies of the men lynched from telephone poles are silhouetted against the sky. Sometimes two men to a pole, hanging above the buildings of a town. Sometimes three. They hang like flags in still air.
In Cumberland, Maryland, a mob used a telephone pole as a battering ram to break into the jail where a black man charged with the murder of a policeman was being held. They kicked him to death, then fired twenty shots into his head. They wanted to burn his body, but a minister asked them not to.
The lynchings happened everywhere, in all but four states. From shortly before the invention of the telephone to long after the first transatlantic call. More in the South, and more in rural areas. In the cities and in the North, there were race riots.
Riots in Cincinnati, New Orleans, Memphis, New York, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Houston . . .
During the race riots that destroyed the black section of Springfield, Ohio, a black man was shot and hanged from a telephone pole.
During the race riots that set fire to East St. Louis and forced five hundred black people to flee their homes, a black man was hanged from a telephone pole. The rope broke and his body fell into the gutter. "Negros are lying in the gutters every few feet in some places," read the newspaper account.
In 1921, …...... four companies of the National Guard were called out to end a race war in Tulsa that began when a white woman accused a black man of rape.

Rosenberger Strikes Again

Representative Cliff Rosenberger, in a May 2 Wilmington News Journal column states, in part, “the overarching theme of the Ohio House's budget in regard to k-12 education was to ensure schools are funded reliably and consistently over the next two years.”

From the Dayton Daily News:
Schools seek new money, major renewals
There are 15 levies from 12 school districts on area ballots Tuesday – four smaller school districts are asking for funding increases of various kinds, while eight districts want voters to renew existing levies.

Note: As a result of previous Ohio House and Rosenberger supported legislation these voter will see a 12.5% additional cost for their new and replacement levies.

In the meantime the legislature continues to ignore the Ohio Supreme Court's mandate for school funding.

Paul Hunter

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Water Loss Update

In November of 2014 a presentation was made to city council concerning the huge amount of treated water was being lost in the distribution system. (see below) A balance of 131 million gallons was unaccounted for in 2013. At first the administration challenged the numbers but eventually accepted the facts. Included in the presentation was the comment that there are many leak detection companies that could be contacted and bought in to solve this years old accelerating and expensive problem.
Fast forward to April 2015. Aqualine a municipal water systems leak specialist had been awarded an estimated $12,000 contract by the Water department to pinpoint any significant leaks in the 100 miles of lines of the distribution system.
Following are some important items gleaned from the company's final report.
a. A total of 17 leaks were detected.
b. These leaks created a total daily loss of 304,775 gallons of treated water. [111 million gallons per year.]
c. “Once the leaks are repaired (repairs have already been completed) the city will be saving approximately $475 per day in water production costs. [$173,375 per year]
d. The payback time for the cost of the contract is a mere 26 days and will provide significant savings for years to come.
In the midterm it is hoped that the savings will be applied to the water department debt and make an eventual water rate decrease possible.
Paul Hunter

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Shocking Water Loss

Presentation to city council 11/6/14
In 2013, 131.32 million gallons of treated water was unaccounted for.
I may be accused of beating a dead horse but in my opinion the importance of this matter requires further study and action.
I note that the administration is now taking an added interest in this water loss problem.
After several days of searching the public record and talking with utility billing and water department personnel I collected the following historical data for 2013 that is included in the handout.
To review the numbers:
From the water department: 557 million gallons of treated water was delivered to the distribution system.
From utility billing office – 396.8 MG of treated water was sold.
The difference between water delivered and water sold was 160.7 MG.
Data on the back of the handout shows that in 2013 the unsold total of 29% was the highest amount over the past twelve years. I am unable to validate the RCAP consultant's conclusion, quote: “the amount of non-revenue water has been relatively stable with a four year average of 18.5%”
Non-revenue distribution is only part of my audit story. There are some known or metered outputs that must be added to the equation.
Authorized non-revenue distribution:
The water department used 27.1 MG*
From the utility billing department:
Waste water, city building & other city accounts use 2.37 MG of metered but not charged treated water.
This leave a balance of 131.32 MG
The balance of the treated water is non metered and, as indicated, only guesswork can provide an explanation for the loss
Some of this loss can be attributed to legitimate uses including fire hydrant flush, fire suppression, sprinkler tests etc: Some erroneous meter functions can be expected but 10% or around 500 meters are checked each year and 100 meters are replaced.
All non metered-not accounted for treated water equals 23.5% of all treated water in 2013. Again, quoting RCAP, “Water loss under 15% is considered acceptable
Quoting an EPA web site,”Average water loss in systems is 16% of which 75% is recoverable.”
Some leakage is to be expected but In my uneducated opinion a 24% loss rate is more than just excessive it's shocking!
The loss represents thousands of dollars per year in wasted treatment costs.
When the automatic flushing fire hydrant conversion is completed, more non-revenue water will be expended adding to the current problem.
This information is valid and action should be taken as outlined in the included internet link.

I am not aware of any attempts to contract for a professional, municipal leak detection service but it might be money well spent. There are many of them out there. Are their any questions?