More debt for Mascoutah schools

May 7, 2013 

I am disappointed. Now Mascoutah District 19 is putting taxpayers further in debt. The district debt is $55,143,403 and rising.

Where's the money coming from to pay for the staff and operation of the new school? We find money for more brick, mortar and steel and nothing for teachers.

You say TIF will bring money in for staff, etc. When a tax increment financing district is formed, it freezes the assessments of all property within TIF and everything property taxes pay for will never raise. But your assessments will and TIF gets that money. TIFs can only collect money if assessments rise. The rise in your assessments above the frozen assessment becomes the increment or the part of taxes TIF gets. TIFs last 23 years. During this time, schools gain nothing.

It was 9 a.m. I was at Precinct 2 located at City Hall. There were three precinct volunteers at their work stations just waiting for people to come in and vote. Nearby were four lonely voting booths on the north wall. The room was still; not a creature to be found, not even a mouse. Three hours passed; only 29 voters found their way.

I am disappointed; 9,600 registered voters within District 19 and only 1,700 found their way. The district won by 170 votes.

You would think that our people would know the real value of voting when Third World countries put us to shame.

James E. Saffel Sr.


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