beautyfromashes wrote:^ So, is this a way to refinance current city debt?
These two KCStat presentations cover alot of the GO Bond stuff and may be useful to you.
I think its probably more informative to watch the actual presentations on Ch2 to see the different department heads walk the Mayor through the presentations and engage in a question and answer style meeting. Its very informative and usually posted to the KCStat Page. For some reason the past few meetings aren't up, but I bet if you email or ask the city's twitter account then someone would put them up.
I think the answer to your question is- sort of. The city's plan is to retire $100 million of debt annually and add roughly $40 (-60 net). The goal is to deleverage the city slowly while also improving the city. Remember though, just because the city has less overall debt doesn't mean there is $60 million extra dollars lying around to spend, it just means we owe $60 million dollars less in total debt.
The last time the city did a major infrastructure spending program (early 2000), it was accomplished without an accompanying tax increase. Instead, the program tied up parts (most) of the existing capital improvement sales taxes to pay for those long term investments. Originally, the capital improvement sales tax was meant to be used to do ongoing maintenance...not long term investments. We are still paying off those bonds. What the city manager has stated he is trying to do now is switch the long term infrastructure costs onto a long term, more stable revenue stream (property taxes) and as the early 2000 infrastructure bonds wind down they will be able to use the funds currently paying for those (capital improvement sales tax) for maintenance and resurfacing. Soo, you should be able to get a revenue source for long term investment and a revenue source for short term maintenance.
One hitch is that the capital improvement sales tax expires sometime next year. At first they were going to roll the renewal of the capital improvement sales tax into the bond questions, but then they decided against it because they thought it was confusing. So we will have to vote to renew that existing tax sometime before next year or we may still be in a bit of an infrastructure conundrum.
Its a pretty bold plan with a lot of moving parts. As important as it will be to make sure future councils spend the money appropriately and don't waste it on new roads or something unintended- it will be just as important to make sure they don't add new debt and that we allow our overall debt level to decrease as planned.