Peter Auger, Auburn Hills City Manager
Thoughts on running a city, daily musings, and everything in between.
City Manager, Auburn Hills, MI
Anyone remember GIGO in the early days of computers?
That’s what I feel like I am hearing as I listened to the radio and read my newspaper this morning.
There was a joyous voice on the radio claiming they found out through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request that the Illitch organization has inquired and found out that a quasi government unit the Michigan Strategic Fund, linked to MEDC could float bonds and eventually own a new Hockey arena downtown. It sounded like the two on the radio were skipping in a circle holding hands as kids who just found some candy. They were boasting what a great deal this was because then the ownership would not only get better financing but wouldn’t have to pay taxes on the building.
And this is good for the city how? Because the city doesn’t have a solid tax base now you are going to have to sell an awful amount of dinners and beer to make up for the hundreds of millions of dollars of a building not being on the tax roll.
While I am hearing this conversation, I was reading the newspaper where the City of Detroit can’t afford an annual fee to belong to a data system that connects the Courts and most of the regions Law Enforcement Agencies (CLEMIS) due to the cost of about $1.2 million. Well the last numbers I saw, the City of Detroit was subsidizing the “Sports venues” by providing free police services at a cost of $1.5 million annually. This does not count Fire or EMS because they don’t track those numbers.
So if the sports teams would just pay for police they use, the police could have a system that would help them go paperless, make them more efficient with their time (putting more police on the street), and save the court system money all at the same time.
Better yet, if those venues would actually pay taxes, wow, think of the possibilities.
Sometimes I think I am just not smart enough to connect all the dots and see where things like this make sense. Guess I need to go back to school, you know GIGO.
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