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Showing posts from December, 2016

CITIZENS FILE LAWSUIT TO PROHIBIT CITY FROM ISSUING BONDS

Action claims ballot language was misleading, so November approval is invalid By Roger McCredie Two Asheville property owners have filed a lawsuit seeking to prevent the City of Asheville from issuing $74 million worth of general obligation bonds that were approved by the public on election day. The suit was brought by retired attorney Sidney Bach and local businessman and former vice mayor Chris Peterson. The plaintiffs are asking the court to declare the voting results invalid.  Voters approved the three-bond bond package -- $17 million for parks and recreation, $25 million for affordable housing and $32 million for transportation – by a margin of approximately 70% - 30%. Bach and Peterson charge that the language of the bond questions, as approved by city council and presented to voters on the Nov. 8 ballot, was “defective,” resulting in “an unfair misrepresentation of material facts” that made all three bond questions “inaccurate, prejudicial and misleading.” Two defects in the wordin…

The Tax Man Cometh

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And if thou livest in the city, he just mayeth be back. By Roger McCredie
The good news is, there’ll be no increase in the county tax rate this year.
The bad news is, that will make little difference to most Buncombe taxpayers because the property revaluation that’s now in the works will increase most properties’ value and result in higher taxes for 2018 anyway.
Those were the tidings county tax officers Gary Roberts and Keith Miller brought to members of the Council of Independent Business Owners at their breakfast meeting last week.
Noting that the county’s last across-the-board property revaluation took place in 2013, County Tax Director Gary Roberts told the CIBO audience, “It’s up to the Board [county commissioners] as to when we should do reappraisals but I think it’s wise to do it about every four years and that seems to be the consensus.”
Roberts noted that the county tax rate remains unchanged at 60.40 cents per $100 of assessed property value (up from 52 cents in 2013).  But yes, …

Vice Mayor hedges on how Housing bond money will be spent

Calls South Charlotte Street development “just a possibility” By Roger McCredie Asheville’s vice mayor told local business leaders on Friday that the city has not made any definite plans to spend $15 million in recently-approved bond money to repurpose and redevelop South Charlotte Street. In fact, City Councilor Gwen Wisler told members of the Council of Independent Business Owners, “we have no formalized plan” in place for exactly how or where that three-fifths of the $25 million “affordable housing bond” approved by Asheville voters last month will be spent. That revelation came in response to an attendee’s question as to when taxpayers could expect to see “a brick and mortar startup” on affordable housing. Wisler, who had been summarizing the approach the city intends to take in using proceeds from the other two bonds approved -- $32 million for transportation and $17 million for parks and recreation – seemed momentarily taken aback by the affordable housing question.  

She pointed out …