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qcity05 - REBEL MEDIA: So I have a sign in my yard - Quincy, IL News - QuincyJournal.com
8 million dollars in over run cost is built into the 89 million. That was discussed at the meeting too. So, really it's 81 million. If it's under, it's under, but it won't go over. I disagree that the new schools won't last as long. Architects are committed to building quality structures, not like Ellington and Monroe which were designed to be temporary, both of which are almost…
Hinkdad - REBEL MEDIA: So I have a sign in my yard - Quincy, IL News - QuincyJournal.com
By your own logic, would a positive effect on the teachers not have a positive effect on the students? It's all cause and effect and Newton's 3rd law. I could quote and reference many sources which could then be rebutted by your own, I'll leave the Googling up to you, I have better ways to spend my time. Something we all seem to agree on is that there is an issue and the current structure…
CoolEdge - REBEL MEDIA: So I have a sign in my yard - Quincy, IL News - QuincyJournal.com
Perhaps UKWP is trying to equate military service with "on the teat" teaching jobs. Of course there are many big differences, especially for military that are deployed, which is part of the job. There are indeed many public school teachers that see their unionized, teaching monopoly, "part time" job as a public service that demands the same respect as our military. Not many retire with PTSD, or…
db1998 - REBEL MEDIA: So I have a sign in my yard - Quincy, IL News - QuincyJournal.com
how do i get a sign for my yard?
qfingers - REBEL MEDIA: So I have a sign in my yard - Quincy, IL News - QuincyJournal.com
And you're making the opposite mistake....saying that each thing, when added together, becomes a total justification. That's not how you justify expenditures. You have to make the case for EACH item in it's own right. And you do that compared to what it would cost to fix it in place...assuming you do have to fix it...which apparently we don't...because it hasn't been done.…

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Transparency or distraction? Local Illinois governments laugh at state plan for more accountability

1 year, 8 months ago by Benjamin Yount, Illinois Watchdog

New legislation would add local government debt info to an online database

SPRINGFIELD —  It’s hutzpah with a capital H.

Two Illinois lawmakers want to require local governments — school districts, cities, counties, townships, water districts, fire protection districts and the like — to be more open with taxpayers about government debt.

But local governments say anyone in Springfield preaching debt management and transparency has, well, a lot of hutzpah.

“That’s hilarious,” said Decatur City Manager Ryan McCrady. “They want to distract from their problems by shifting focus to us? Fine. But make sure to put my bond rating next to the state’s.”

McCrady says Decatur has a far better bond rating than the state of Illinois, which just saw a credit downgrade because of inaction on its massive pension debt.

New legislation would add local government debt information to the state’s online information portal, force all new legislation to report debt impact and create a local debt review board.

House Republican Leader Tom Cross said he wants to “educate” voters.

“People have a right to know, and should know, what debt is out there,” Cross said Wednesday. “How’s their money spent? Is that tax working? How much are they raising from that tax, and how is it being spent?”

The Illinois Comptroller’s office already collects [3] much of that data.

McCrady said local voters can get that information by going to any meeting of the City Council.

“We have to vote on every expense, and those meetings are all on TV,” McCrady said. “I talk with local taxpayers every day. They know what is going on in their city.”

Jerry Crabtree is associate director of the Township Officials of Illinois, which represents the state’s 1,432 townships in Springfield. He said even tiny local governments stay in touch with taxpayers.

“Townships operate in the community,” Crabtree said. “And elected officials will hear from taxpayers almost 24 hours a day.”

Crabtree says townships, for the most part, are financially secure.

“I find it ironic that the state is picking on a unit of government that pays its bills and does plan for the future,” Crabtree said, noting Illinois’ unpaid bills and massive pension debt.

Since 2008, which marked the advent of tougher lending laws, few local governments have been able to spend wildly on borrowed money.

McCrady said the new lending requirements are the “financial equivalent of a proctology exam.”

Ron Sandack is the former Republican mayor of Downers Grove and the city’s current state representative. He said there may be some local governments with good finances and little debt, but there are hundreds of school districts, more than a thousand townships and countless park districts, fire districts and mosquito abatement districts.

“If you ask your neighbor, I think they distinguish less who levied the tax,” Sandack said. “They just look at the bottom line and say I’m paying more than I was the year before.”

The transparency proposals are, for now, ideas only;  lawmakers have not held a hearing on any of the plans.

Contact Benjamin Youtn at Ben@IllinoisWachdog.org


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