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True Costs Of the MCSC School Levy

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Dean View Drop Down
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    Posted: Apr 19 2014 at 1:56pm
Ms. Andrew,
I apologize for my dialatory response to your question regarding swimming pools and Oxford location.
 
Although I did swim competitively in college, we would have been more likely to have bumped into one another when I swam in New Jersey as a Tiger on a pretty good P team, where one my fomer team members, about 10 years older, was Dave Voorhis, class of 69 I recall. Or, maybe when I was working out at the Highland Park Swim Club, but not at the Oxford Y. The odds were more favorable we would have passed each other in an Ephs lane, or Tiger, than a Y pool. I grew up in Lake Forest, right above Winnetka. Olson is a favorite Cincinnati 'W' guy, but no aqua-lunger. 
 
I thought we met at the Farmer School at a Board meeting, but it may have been someone from Fairfield's BOE. The butterfly was my stroke. 
 
To the levy. I would feel much better although I don't like the concept of rehiring, or bringing back retirees, if Gene Saylor put his stamp behind the Phase 2, and for that matter, Phase 1 numbers, than the folks brought in from Monroe, a district which broke away from Middletown at the same time Phase 1 was getting ready to be funded.
 
I also do not like the funny numbers used to move this along. The backend use of a state match, without indicating what the taxpayer is truly paying.
 
Here's what a collegue of mine ran:
 
Phae 1 and Phae 2 combined, True Cost to Taxpayer
 
Own a House Value     COST TO PAYER
 
100,000                        300. ANNUAL
125,000                        375 ANNUAL
150,000                        450 ANNUAL
175,000                        525 ANNUAL
200,000                        600. ANNUAL
250,000                        750. ANNUAL
300,000                        900 ANNUAL
350,000                        1050 ANNUAL
400,000                        1200. ANNUAL    
 
This is the cost daily of a cup of coffee.....if you are hitting Starbucks up for Quad caramel lattes about 10 times daily.                
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote chmoore1 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 19 2014 at 5:01pm
Dean: my calculator is old, but I think it still works. I assume you were saying that at $1,200 year, the cost would equal 10 high-priced Starbucks a day. $1,200/year divided by 365 equals $3.29 a day---perhaps one latte per day.   just 1chmoore.
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Marcia Andrew View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Marcia Andrew Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 21 2014 at 10:35am
Dean,
 
I don't know Gene Saylor.  I will assume from your comment that he was good at his job and you trusted him.  George Long is MCSD's current business manager.  Although he does split his time (and pay) between Middletown and Monroe, we did not bring him in from Monroe.  His last position was as business manager/HR manager at Springboro School District, where he supervised a school construction project.  He has overseen the efforts of the architects hired by MIddletown and the Ohio School Facilities Commission to estimate the costs of the various options for middle school/high school project.  I am assuming that you did not participate in/attend any of the meetings of the Middletown Facilities Commission or its open forums in which they described the different alternatives and their respective costs and asked for community input.   If you have questions, why not call him and ask to sit down and have him talk you through it, and answer your questions? 
 
As to Phase I, the business manager for most of that time period was Frank Chapman, and then Milt Thompson.  Phase I project was completed on time, within budget, and employed a very large percentage of local contractors.
 
I cannot comment on the accuracy of your estimates of the tax assessment for the combined bonds for both Phase I and Phase II, because I don't know the tax per $100,000 of the Phase I bond.  The Phase I bonds are already in place and show up on everyone's tax bills each year, so they are no secret.  I would just note that there are very very few houses in Middletown with a tax valuation of $300,000 or $400,000.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote chmoore1 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 21 2014 at 11:38am
Mrs. Andrew: as you know, all of the facilities' committee's information had been available on the MCSD's website. Perhaps Aflatkey/others would benefit by reading all of the pertinent information in those reports. I don't think it is currently available (on the site). Would you know how they could retrieve it? The information had the entire process that the committee went through. (Sorry Acclaro, for the sentence ending in a preposition). just 1chmoore.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acclaro Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 21 2014 at 1:25pm
chmoore1, the building PPT'S were put out on the website quite some time ago, I read every page. It was a high level, macro presentation that was countered by many architects and building (construction) project managers as being inflated and not offering an apple to apple comparison. I recall the feedback  was akin to a math equation having the answer, and the presentation spent on a rudimentary justification. Fairly easy to formulate numbers giving desired effect.

I believe "through" as used, would be an adverb, as it is used as a form of action. I would prefer "undertook", or initiated. But, my iPad misses the soft-keys so we won't worry about command of the English language.

So sorry you had "guard duty" this weekend chm1, what a bummer over the holiday.

I haven't reviewed Dean's numbers, but I believe they are low, but close. Phase 1 was about $60 MM, with 100 % of residential and businesses paying it, and Phase 2 is $55 MM, so in your head, easy to extrapolate the cost. BUT, it is not the figures your committee has been listing inaccurately.

For a $59,000 house valuation, it would be $177.00 annualized.

As opposed to taking out $1,486,486. MM annualized, over 37 years, with a sum of $55,000,000., imagine taxpayer how much cash would come into the economy locally without $1.48 MM per year spent on buildings having no impact upon learning. Lakota had an excellent weekend article associated with online instruction and effectiveness of teaching foreign languages online.

Brick and mortar is a bad investment.  Don't take out approximately $1.5 MM annually, from the local economy. for the next 37 years.

 
    
'An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.' - Winston Churchill
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Iron Man Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 21 2014 at 1:27pm
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acclaro View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acclaro Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 21 2014 at 2:20pm
Ms. Andrew, the original plan of the BOE was a project that would be a total amount of $118,000,000. How did 118 MM become 156 MM?

Most would call that scope creep on a project, but I will assume it will be called "higher construction costs over time" by the BOE.

Also, if the rule of thumb is correct, which is a levy generates about 3x actually construction costs, the true cost with interest over time, is nearly > $ 450,000,000.

   
'An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.' - Winston Churchill
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chmoore1 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote chmoore1 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 21 2014 at 2:42pm
Acclaro: did I have "guard duty" this past weekend? Missed it, if I did. What was I "guarding"? It seems that the first phase was around $77 million, so the second phase wouldn't have been only $41 million (118 minus 77----41). Also, not "my committee." The 156 must include the state's portion---around 41 million.   Please let me know when it's my turn in the barrel for guard duty, and, especially, what I'm supposed to guard.    just 1chmoore
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acclaro Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 21 2014 at 2:55pm
156 MM x .26- 40.56 MM

156 MM - 41 MM- 115 MM

Same numbers. About a 7.5-8 mil cumulative levy (Phase 1, 2)

Glad you aren't on the votemiddies.com team chm1.

Guarding the truth : D Amortized pain---brilliant strategy.
'An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.' - Winston Churchill
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processor View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote processor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 21 2014 at 3:28pm
You can't just add the principle amount of phase 1 and 2 and assume that the additional millage is proportional. The "payments" for phase 1 were accelerated so that there will be little additional cost for phase 2. The accelerated payments for phase 1 will be eliminated and a more standard bond payment plan will be implemented for the two phases together to keep the millage from increasing too much. I don't have the numbers handy, but the additional property tax may very well equate to one Starbucks coffee per day.
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acclaro View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acclaro Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 21 2014 at 3:44pm
processor, albeit accelerated or not, the cost would be as was indicated, or a close. Phase 1 was not matched, hence, we have principle costs, which now appears to be heavily front-end loaded (using the acceleration you refer), but I understand your point. But, if you look at LFI, the chasm/ variance, between Phase 1 and Phase 2 is negligible; about $ 5 Mm.

On the top end (300-400 KK property value), paying about a Wildwood membership annually, .4 % Brown's Run, and about 1.6 of membership at Forest Hills---annually.

ROI has to be there; pretty high numbers.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote chmoore1 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 21 2014 at 4:15pm
Acclao: you state: "Glad you aren't on the votemiddies.com team chm1."

How do you know for certain that I'm NOT?   just 1chmoore
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acclaro Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 21 2014 at 4:55pm
chm1;" Also, not "my committee."

Reference to votemiddies.com NOT your committee?

Levity, know you support the 'Starbucks' tax. Spirited debate, nothing personal.

Heck, I'd like to see the monthly fee per day broken into CPM   (Cost Per Minute).

.29 cents an hour.

.005 cents a minute.

In other words, lets squeeze that number where it vanishes.

Wacko
'An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.' - Winston Churchill
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote VietVet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 22 2014 at 6:28am
processor:

"but the additional property tax may very well equate to one Starbucks coffee per day"

MIGHT BE HARD TO COME UP WITH FOR A COMMUNITY THAT CAN ONLY AFFORD A SPEEDWAY 99 CENT COFFEE PROCESSOR. THINK IN TERMS OF A POOR COMMUNITY, CREATED BY THE SCHOOL BOARD BUDDIES DOWN AT THE CITY BUILDING.

YOU MAY BE ABLE TO AFFORD THAT ONE STARBUCKS AT KROGER. MANY PROPERTY OWNERS ARE TAPPED OUT, ON BUDGETS AND CAN ONLY BUY THE "GOOD VALUE" COFFEE AT WAL-MART.

10/4?
I'm so proud of my hometown and what it has become. Recall 'em all. Let's start over.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Marcia Andrew Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 22 2014 at 9:54am
chmoore, the school district website was re-designed last year. We are looking to re-post in one place all of the documents from the Facilities Committee.  In the meantime, one could go to the Board Docs page and search "master facilities" and a number of presentations to the board pop up.  However, this only goes back to I think 2010 when we started using the Board Docs software.  It won't show the process prior to that.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Marcia Andrew Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 22 2014 at 10:00am
Acclaro, you ask why the project increased from $118 million to $156 million.  It did not.  When the district entered into the ELPP in 2004, the total master facilities plan project budget was $156 million, to be completed in two roughly equal phases. I don't know where you are pulling the $118 million number from.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Marcia Andrew Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 22 2014 at 10:11am
Several posters keep stating, as if it is a fact, that the middle school building is in the shape it is in because the district has supposedly not spent any money on maintenance and repair of the building since the last "major renovation" of the building 50+ years ago.  I asked our treasurer to pull information from the district's records as to amounts spent on repairs and maintenance at the middle school.  Over the last 7 years (the time period available on the financial system) the district has spent over $100,000 per year on average on maintenance and repairs of the middle school.  This does not include the time of salaried maintenance workers (before we outsourced maintenance to Sodexho 2 years ago) or the portion of the Sodexho contract attributable to the middle school (much routine maintenance or small repairs are done within the contractual payment to Sodexho).  This is during a time period when the district has been deferring major repairs or replacements on the middle school once the master plan anticipated that the building would be replaced as part of phase two.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acclaro Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 22 2014 at 10:16am
Ms. Andrew; I am attempting to paint a historic evolution of the school levy, Phases 1-2.

In 2001, as posted elsewhere, this was directly out of the Cincinnati Enquirer. My question was, how did 118 MM become 156 MM, and why? This project was approved by Ohio Facilities Commission for 118 MM when it began prior to negotiation. 

processor....I have been wrestling with your statement made yesterday on accelerated payments for Phase 1. I assume the Butler Cty Board of Elections archive previous ballot languages, but did the ballot state that was an accelerated payment, and by how many years was it accelerated?

Or did the BOE make increased principle payments over time? I don't recall the reference made to the voters the levy was accelerated to lower the costs to Phase 2, but was perplexed by your statement yesterday.

_____________

2001 March Cincinnati Enquirer

'The board voted 4-0 Tuesday to cancel the 4.1-mill combination issue that would have provided a $30 million bond issue, and a permanent improvement levy that would raise $18.5 million over 10 years. The money was to have been used in a $71 million plan that called for renovating and repairing all the schools in the district over several years.

        In a March 9 meeting with school officials, the commission unveiled a $118 million proposal that calls for the closing of all elementary schools except Amanda. Those 11 schools would be replaced with five new buildings under the state's plan, said Edmund Pokora, treasurer for Middletown schools.

        Founded in 1997, the commission provides funds for districts to make repairs to schools or rebuild them based on a formula that takes into consideration residents' income, enrollment and property values. Under the formula, Middletown would be eligible for money in 2009-2011.

        “Their plan is more expensive and takes away neighborhood schools,” said board member John Venturella. “It closes some buildings and consolidates others.”


 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acclaro Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 22 2014 at 11:33am
Attention Voters....we have to take commercial break from one of our sponsors:

Valentine's Day Dinner

February 14th, 2014, 5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Spagetti Dinner at Middletown Middle School
$8.00 - Adult Ticket
$4:00 - Child/Student Ticket
Stay for the Varsity Boys Basketball Game & Senior Night
Dinner provided by Sodexo

The voter should determine who puts $1.5 MM into the economy, not the BOE, nor its vendors.

Ms. Andrew; respectfully, you have made the case for the opposition, by stating very little maintenance was done after Phase 1, conveniently, teeing up Phase 2 replacement----"why bother with maintenance, we are getting a new car!"

Also, this project was visioned by a BOA that did not want new buildings. The Ohio Facilities Commission authorizes alterations for any capital expenditures weighing new build vs renovation of old, above 66% of outlay.

Movement to the east end is the driver, maintenance costs just along for the "ride."

When considering the numbers leaving the middle school years and returning, they are very nominal when considering the capital outlay.

The voters should vote this down in my opinion, and wait until MCSD sees improvement and in all probability, has a better state match than .26%, in my opinion.       

'An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.' - Winston Churchill
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote VietVet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 22 2014 at 12:14pm
Ms. Andrew:

"Several posters keep stating, as if it is a fact, that the middle school building is in the shape it is in because the district has supposedly not spent any money on maintenance and repair of the building since the last "major renovation" of the building 50+ years ago"

THAT COVERS THE MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR ASPECT OF THE CONVERSATION.

NOW, YOU NEED TO DISCUSS THE MONIES SET ASIDE TO PERFORM "PREVENTATIVE MAINTENANCE" AS WE HAVE OFFERED.

Preventive maintenance (PM) has the following meanings:

1.The care and servicing by personnel for the purpose of maintaining equipment and facilities in satisfactory operating condition by providing for systematic inspection, detection, and correction of incipient failures either before they occur or before they develop into major defects.
2.Maintenance, including tests, measurements, adjustments, and parts replacement, performed specifically to prevent faults from occurring

YOU MENTION WORK AFTER THE DAMAGE HAS BEEN DONE.....

PLEASE TELL US IF THIS PROGRAM WAS IN PLACE OVER THE LAST 50 YEARS TO PREVENT MAJOR ISSUES.
I'm so proud of my hometown and what it has become. Recall 'em all. Let's start over.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Marcia Andrew Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 22 2014 at 1:06pm
Vet, maintenance and repair includes preventive maintenance.  Repair is fixing something that has broken, maintenance is routine care and prevention, like oil and gas changes and tire alignments for your car. Both have been done.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Marcia Andrew Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 22 2014 at 1:12pm
Acclaro, the article you copied from 2001 answers your own question.  It is from 2001, several years before the Phase 1 levy was presented to and approved by the public based on a $156 million total master plan cost.  The article says that the OSFC -- not the BOE -- proposed a $118 million plan, which the BOE did not like because it called for larger centralized schools, not neighborhood elementaries, which community surveys indicated Middletown wanted.  There was obviously negotiation and revisions to the master plan between 2001 and 2004 when it was approved by the BOE, the OSFC and the Middletown voters.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote processor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 22 2014 at 1:37pm
Acclaro, I don't remember all of the details regarding the higher initial bond payments and I don't know where to go to get the details, but in concept it was like two different bond issues. The largest one for full term and the bulk of the cost. The second one for 5 years, or so, for a smaller portion of the total cost. Since the second bond issue was a much shorter term the payments were higher than they would have been with a longer term. This "second" short term bond issue will go away and the new bonds for phase two will be at the max term allowed thus not adding much to the millage and to the yearly cost for property owners.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acclaro Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 22 2014 at 3:04pm
Thank you both for your responses.

This negative trend is concerning, as well as the stability of  AKS and a merger in the future associated with $ 55 MM and 40% that don't fund the buildings.

As Ms. Andrew correctly stated, ther aren't too many 300,000 and above houses in the city.

Both the middle school and high school were rated in bottom 3% in the state.

Source-  www. usa.com

House Value

Median Value of a Total of 11,753 Owner Occupied Houses in Middletown City School District, #459
Middletown City School District 101,900 USD
Ohio 133,700 USD
U.S. 181,400 USD
Median House Price Growth Since 2005-2009, see rank
Middletown City School District
-2.67%
Ohio
28.93%
U.S.
51.67%

*The Middletown City School District median house price growth rate is since 2005-2009. The Ohio and U.S population growth rate is since 2000.
House Value DistributionMiddletown City School DistrictOhioU.S.$50k orLess$50K to$100k$100K to$150k$150 to$200k$200k to$300k$300k to$500k$500k to$1 million$1 millionor more0204060Percentage of All Houses (%)

*Based on 2008-2012 data. View historical house value data.

Housing Occupancy

 Middletown City School District%OhioU.S.
Total Housing Units23,800, see rank100%5,127,508131,704,730
Occupied Housing Units20,64886.76%, see rank89.78%88.62%
Owner Occupied11,07846.55%, see rank60.67%57.69%
Renter Occupied9,57040.21%, see rank29.11%30.93%
Vacant Housing Units3,15213.24%, see rank10.22%11.38%
For Rent1,5956.70%, see rank3.59%3.14%
For Sale Only4641.95%, see rank1.52%1.44%
Rented or Sold, Not Occupied1170.49%, see rank0.53%0.48%
For Seasonal, Recreational, or Occasional Use780.33%, see rank1.14%3.53%
For Migrant Workers00.00%, see rank0.01%0.02%
Other Vacant8983.77%, see rank3.42%2.77%

*Based on 2010 data. View historical housing occupancy data.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote VietVet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 22 2014 at 3:10pm
Originally posted by Marcia Andrew Marcia Andrew wrote:



Vet, maintenance and repair includes preventive maintenance.  Repair is fixing something that has broken, maintenance is routine care and prevention, like oil and gas changes and tire alignments for your car. Both have been done.


NOPE. MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR DO NOT INCLUDE PREVENTATIVE MAINTENANCE. MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR HAPPEN AS A RESULT OF HAVING NO PM. (PREVENTATIVE MAINTENANCE) IF ONE WATCHES AND TENDS TO THE MACHINE (BUILDING IN THIS CASE) AS TIME GOES BY, PM IS DESIGNED TO LESSEN THE IMPACT AND COST OF MAJOR REPAIRS.

Ms. Andrew, I will use a very simple analogy so that you may understand the difference between routine maintenance/repair and PREVENTATIVE MAINTENANCE..

YOU AND I OWN HOMES. THE HOMES HAVE A LAWN. THE LAWN REQUIRES WATER, FERTILIZER, WEED AND INSECT CONTROL AND CORE AERATION TO STAY ALIVE AND FLOURISH DURING THE GROWING SEASON/SUMMER MONTHS.

IF YOU DO NOT SPEND THE MONEY ON A HIGHER WATER BILL IN SUMMER MONTHS, DO NOT INVEST IN SCOTTS HALTS FOR CRABGRASS, TURF BUILDER PLUS TWO FOR WEED CONTROL, SUMMERIZER FOR FERTILIZER AND INSECT CONTROL AND WINTERIZER FOR THE FALL, YOU MAY LOSE YOUR ENTIRE LAWN AND INVEST AN EVEN GREATER SUM OF MONEY RE-ESTABLISHING YOUR LAWN.

YOU MUST SPEND MONEY TO PROTECT YOUR INVESTMENT AND TO PREVENT AN EVEN BIGGER CATASTROPHY...IE- LOSING THE ENTIRE LAWN.....OR BUILDING.

SAME WITH VAIL. IF YOU DIDN'T SET UP, IN YOUR BUILDING BUDGET, A SUM OF MONEY TO TACKLE THE THINGS NECESSARY TO PREVENT SOMETHING MORE SERIOUS FROM HAPPENING TO THE BUILDING EACH YEAR OVER THE 50 YEARS WE ARE DISCUSSING, YOU INCURED LARGE REPAIR BILLS WHEN THE PROBLEMS CAME TO A POINT OF NO RETURN.

IT IS WHAT FACTORIES USE TO KEEP THEIR MACHINES ON LINE AND RUNNING TO MEET PRODUCTION SCHEDULES. BEATS THE HECK OUT OF A MACHINE SITTING IDLE FOR WEEKS/MONTHS WAITING FOR AN EXPENSIVE REPAIR BILL TO BRING IT BACK ON LINE.

AGAIN, WAS THERE A PM PROGRAM SET UP DURING THIS 50 YEAR PERIOD, KNOWING THE BUILDING WAS IN A SITUATION OF REQUIRING MORE ATTENTION AND WAS THERE A SPECIFIC FUND SET UP IN THE BUDGET FOR PM? IS THERE ONE NOW FOR ALL SCHOOL BUILDINGS OR IS THE PLAN JUST TO LET THEM FALL APART, TENDING TO THE MAINTENANCE ASPECT WHEN THE SITUATION BECOMES CRITICAL?...THEN ASK THE TAXPAYER TO BUY YOU A NEW BUILDING LIKE YOU'RE DOING NOW AND WITH THE ELEMENTARIES YEARS AGO?
I'm so proud of my hometown and what it has become. Recall 'em all. Let's start over.
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