willcpa 2 years, 5 months ago on Some goodbyes are a little harder to say

Great story Carlton. Our pets are treasured members of our families and this a great tribute to Saucy. R.I.P. Saucy.


willcpa 3 years ago on Lee County releases road paving priorities

Cartman, Armena is already scheduled to be paved. The list handed out last night consists of roads that are not presently scheduled to be paved. Sorry for the confusion, but just wanted to let you know that Armena is already in the works!


willcpa 3 years, 3 months ago on Lee garbage ordinance repealed

Being a commissioner, I feel a need to correct some your "facts" as stated above. Mr. Griffin was given on 8/22/11 the following information regarding billing and collections for the year ending 6/30/11. A total of $2,460,266.70 was billed for garbage and a total of $2,068,815.58 was collected for these billings. This translates to a collection rate of 84% and a loss of $391,451.12 between the amount billed and the amount collected. This is consistent with what the commission has reported. Your figure of a true 2 or 3% nonpayment rate can not possibly be based upon "fact."

Also, I have no knowledge of any commissioner ever blaming Ms. Bryan for the garbage problem. All Ms. Bryan can do is follow legal channels for collecting this past due money. But there comes a time where we begin to spend more money than we can possibly collect from these delinquent accounts and the commission felt that the most "efficient" way of collecting this money was to place the garbage on the tax bill.

You also falsely state the county is making more than 400K in profit. The only way you can arrive at this figure is to subtract the cost paid to Veola from the amount that we bill for garbage. However, there are many other costs associated with this, such as salaries and benefits for Utility Services employees, postage and printing of monthly billings, etc. If you had included these additional expenses, your conclusion would be different. Having done my own analysis, we are actually losing money on garbage.

Lastly, I would like to clarify your implication that the commission blindly passed this ordinance based upon Mr. Skipper's explanation. I assure you that Mr. Skipper's explanation was for the PUBLIC'S information and not for the COMMISSION'S. This ordinance has been in the works for awhile and every commissioner knew exactly what they had voted for.

I appreciate Cartman's comments regarding this issue and feel that he is being sensible about this. Even though this commission feels that the property tax method is the most efficient and effective way of collecting the past due garbage bills, we are willing to let the voters decide in the non-binding referendum.

This commission has done a lot of good things that have been overshadowed by this garbage issue. I am particulary proud that we have not raised taxes in 6 years. I spend most of the month of May away from my profession working on our budget in order to ensure that taxes are not raised. We have also increased our fund balance for the last 3 years, which is remarkable given the economy. We have also built a new animal shelter and Fire/EMS station, made Grand Island and the Utility Authority self-sufficient and initiiated a road paving program to name a few.

I only wish that there others like Cartman that recognizes this and is willing to forgive us for one thing that he disagrees with us on.