DOWNTOWN DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY IN
The Monticello Downtown
Development Authority appears to be in trouble.
After reading on at least 3 different occasions that the DDA was behind on
its bills, the TWG sent an open records request asking for
information. We have copied our request
and the responses at the end of this email.
As of today, Sage Edwards, nor anyone else from the DDA has ever
provided a cash flow statement that the City of Monticello requested some
time before TWG requested it.
When the DDA decided to get into private business,
a/k/a The Red Clay Café and Gallery, TWG wrote about it and called members of
the DDA. They assured TWG that this
would be a money-making venture and the
City taxpayers would not have to help out with the bills.
Based on the information TWG
has obtained, that is not the case. The City has backed this venture with its
involvement in the RFL (Revolving Fund Loan) which is now owed approximately
$117,000. Total amounts owed to all vendors as of 6/12/09
were listed at $188,258.85.
here to see who is owed and how much is owed by the DDA or go to this link: http://www.taxdogs.com/DDA
amts due 6.1.09.pdf
The City Council seems to have
realized that the DDA was in trouble and starting asking questions. Rod Perry, Chairman of the DDA, was asked for
information and he sent a letter to the
City telling them DDA needed help.
See that letter here: http://www.taxdogs.com/DDA
help Perry letter 6.4.09.pdf
DDA’s solution is to borrow MORE money,
$15,500 from each bank or $31,000 in additional debt, and increase the loans to
15 years. This will help them
catch up what they owe to vendors and on the loans. This sounds like the government thing to do. Borrow
more money, go deeper in debt, and hope everything works out and if it doesn’t
the taxpayers will have to pay the bills.
See proposal here: http://www.taxdogs.com/DDA
proposal on debt 6.15.09.pdf
The City taxpayers need to keep
a close watch on what is happening.
Nothing has been said or written in the local paper about what is going
on 2 months later. City taxpayers just had their property taxes
raised as well as a big increase in sewer charges and another increase in the
water charges. Get ready for more as you
help bail out the DDA.
Date: Saturday, June 20, 2009, 4:45 PM
Dear Mayor and Mayor Pro-tem,
After reading in the Monticello News on at
least 3 occasions that the Downtown Development Authority is behind on its
bills, we are requesting the following information under the open records
A list of the vendors owed by the DDA and the amounts of the past due bills.
A list of vendors owing the DDA and the amounts due to the DDA by those
A copy of the record of DDA’s cash flow as requested by the City from DDA.
The amount of the 2 loans being refinanced by the DDA and which banks they
be financed and the rate of interest charged.
Date: Wedneday, June 24, 2009, 2:25 PM
This is the official City of Monticello
response to your request for information (attached) dated June 20, 2009.
Most of the records you have requested have not yet been submitted to the
city. Please request those directly from Ms. Sage Edwards (firstname.lastname@example.org). We have
attached the pdfs for two letters we have received from Mr. Rod Perry, chairman
of the DDA, which contain some of the information you have requested, and are
the only documents we have that relate to your request.
Please let me know if you have any additional questions.
City of Monticello
Monday, June 29, 2009 1:51
Mrs. Nowenter &
I am just now able to read
your email request, my computer has been down with no internet access in
addition to a nonfunctiong printer. Once I am working with a fully
operating computer I will honor your request as soon as possible. Thank
** To keep the taxpayers of Jasper County, Georgia
informed as to where and how their tax dollars are
** To keep the taxpayers abreast of local policies
and laws being discussed and enacted.
** We advocate more open government, less government
spending, and lower property taxes.