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Jul 17

An Ordinance In The Making

Comments (0) 12:00 AM posted by admin |

Last night’s meeting of Ypsilanti’s Blue Ribbon Committee on City Finances met and approved a very similar version of the report I posted the other day here. The only differences are a few friendly amendments and addendums. The final proposal is still a 1% income tax on residents and corporations, a 0.5% income tax on non-residents, a $1000 credit for each exemption, and a 2.0 mill property tax rollback for all homesteaders. Only Steve Pierce and Ingrid Kock voted against the final report. Ms. Kock voted against the report because she believed the proposal set to go before City Council is regressive. Mr. Pierce voted against the report because he felt the income tax is nothing more than a stop-gap measure for a looming fiscal crisis and only delays the politicians from dealing with the problems at hand by burdening the residents with more taxes. Ingrid Kock and Deborah Strong released this statement prior to the meeting that became one of the addendums to the final report.

City Manager Ed Koryzno said the proposal would go before Council on August 2nd. He said this at least four times last night. The agenda on the City web site says nothing about the report being sent to Council tonight, but…The math that was presented to me says that in order for this to be approved by August 29th in order to be put on a November ballot, the following must happen:

In order for the ordinance language to be ready for a August 2nd reading the ordinance needs to be advertised in the Ypsilanti Courier TWICE. That’s the 21st and 28th of July. The wording has to be finalized fourteen days prior to August 29th or August 15th. There needs to be two readings prior to that date.

I prefer the phrase “Carl Bernstein in training” to “conspiracy nut” or “tin foil hat guy,” but it’s entirely possible that my math is incorrect in this case. If that’s true, my credibility merely takes another hit. Big deal. My street cred got a boost last night as the BRCCF commended me for my little income tax calculator thing (although they refused to pay me the twenty-two thousand dollars I thought I was owed for my work). I can probably screw up one and a half more times before that good will is gone.

There will be a lot more said on this issue over the coming month. And because this issue is so complex and affects so many unique groups in Ypsilanti, it is going to force members of City Council to take a real leadership role. The citizens will be keeping a close watch.

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