Posted by kankakeegazette.com staff | News & Opinion June 9, 2012, 3:58 a.m.
Bourbonnais Township Park District plans to spend 3.1 million dollars of your money to buy the failed recreation facility, Hidden Cove Sportsplex.
Because of the Tax Cap law, they can’t raise taxes without your permission. So Bourbonnais Park District Executive Director Hollice Clark and the BTPD Board will do an ‘end-around’ play and borrow the money by issuing alternative revenue bonds for which no permission is required.
To add insult to injury, they have pointed out that your tax RATE will not increase. They imply it won’t cost you anything.
It will cost you. What they don’t tell you is that you will be paying that 3.1 million dollars plus interest out of your taxes.
It’s a simple accounting trick used by car dealers for years. You have all heard salesmen say: “Don’t worry if your old car isn’t paid off yet – we’ll just put it on the new car loan and extend your current payments!”
Essentially, BTPD will extend out for twenty years the loans they already have. Sure, your payments won’t go up – you’ll just be paying longer. The failing Hidden Cove Sportsplex isn’t free – it’s 2.4 million dollars plus .7 million dollars for unspecified “other park upgrades” (Daily Journal May 26) – that BTPD plans to buy without getting your permission to spend your taxes.
You can stop them cold – all you need do is gather 2000 signatures on petitions requiring that BTPD has to put this purchase to a referendum vote on November 6.
Make sure you sign the petition when someone brings it around. And you can volunteer to help collect signatures even if you live outside the BTPD area.
If the project has merit, why not let the voters decide? Failure to put projects like this in front of the voters raises suspicions as to the project’s legitimacy.
And let’s be clear about costs – misleading claims (“your tax Rate won’t increase”) that distort the reality of what this project will cost you, amount to lies.
The Bourbonnais Township Park District was approached last September by owner Mr. Blair Minton about buying Hidden Cove Sportsplex (Daily Journal May 22, 2012). Mr. Clark had months to place the project on the March primary ballot so the voters could decide. And he and the BTPD Board still have months left to place it on the November 6 ballot.
But clearly, they thought they could bounce through this without anyone knowing they were obligated to notify the taxpayers of their right to due process. Now BTPD thinks they have Mr. Bruck to blame if their deal falls through (Daily Journal May 26, 2012).
The truth is, Mr. Clark, your “deal” has already fallen through. From now on, your only choice is to play it straight without any more hidden coves the voters should know about.
Why have 2 owners failed to make a go of Hidden Cove? Bourbonnais Township Park Dist. decided you should be the 3rd!
If you want to decide for yourself, sign the referendum petition to put this on the ballot November 6.
You can go to the following businesses to sign the petition:
Larimer & O’Connor 729 W. Broadway, Bradley, 815-932-7493; Alexander Equipment Rental, 1511 Commerce Dr. Bourbonnais, 815-933-2122 and RR&J Rentals, 422 N. Kennedy Dr., Bradley, 815-939-0500.