Details key with

housing incentive

This is in response to a recent article in The Garden City Telegram

with regard to the possibility of initiating an additional $2.50 fee on

to city utility bills.

I am in favor of this proposal only on the following grounds.

1) This fee is collected and kept in a separately maintained account.

2) The fees collected are for a specifically defined purpose and no

other. These are not discretionary funds to be spent on other projects

the governing body finds worthy.

3) A predetermined top limit amount is established when this fee is

enacted which will cause the cessation of collection of this fee before

any funds are expended or can application be made for such funds.

4) This fee shall not be increased during its period of enactment.

5) This enacting ordinance or whichever enabling action shall have a definite sunset not to exceed five years.

I believe if there is enough demand for additional developmental

land such property will become available when the market price has

reached the right level.

When I had the privilege to serve the people of Garden City as a

Commissioner (1997 to 2001), 1 mill of taxation was roughly $130,000.

This would represent about 2 mills of city budget, all things being

equal for the past 10 years. What is being proposed now is additional

mill levy that would not appear on the city budget to be published in

the summer. It would be a fee added to everyone's utility bill whether

or not they supported this idea.

If the governing body wants to create a fund to subsidize

developers, bringing a city-wide sales tax vote before the citizens

will be the true test of the necessity of this action or inaction.

Regards,

JAMES DOUGLASS,

Garden City

Douglass served as mayor of Garden City from 1999 to 2000.