Hoover city treasurer spells out options for increasing revenue, including taxes

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No to Fine Arts Center

Good job by the Council to consider all these available options. However, I believe additional cost cutting should be done before pursuing these. Hoover needs to reign in the projected increase in headcount, make employees contribute more for health insurance (like private industry), cut charitable contributions, and restructure old debt before asking for any tax increase.

If a tax increase is then necessary, I think increasing the Hoover sewer rates and increasing the property tax is the way to go. Also, I sincerely hope the Mayor and Council do not pursue the idea of building a fine arts center. For one, the Birmingham area already has enough venues. No way should they issue more debt (that we can't afford) while telling residents they need to raise taxes because of revenue shortfalls all while spending millions on a new fine arts center. Talk about bad optics. We are already seeing a strain from the Finley Center debt payments. Please, no more new debt (restructuring is fine).

Andrew 84 days ago

Options for increasing Hoover revenue

I am all for increasing property tax, sales tax, charging for garbage pickup monthly and any other increases shared by residents. However, something needs to be done about water/sewer charges. My bill is between $300.00 and $400.00 monthly for a two person household during spring & summer. We have a beautiful lawn and it requires water to keep it looking good. I understand water charges but sewer charges are ridiculous especially since the water isn’t going into the sewer.

Tom & Johnnie Gory 85 days ago

Private meter

Maybe you should look in to getting a private water meter. It allows you to get reimbursed for the sewer charges when water is used for lawn/landscape. That makes way more sense then charging extra property tax, sales tax, garbage pickup and any other increases you're so eager for everyone to share so that you can continue to water your lawn/landscape at a reduced rate.

Brian 85 days ago

Restructuring

Just imagine rather than restructuring debt that the debt for the Finley Center had never been incurred. Restructuring is no more than kicking the can down the road. Rather than kicking the can down the road, in the future don't incur debt that residents will be saddled with before coming up with a public, vetted, workable plan as opposed to closed meetings the week before Christmas.

Darrin Abernathy 85 days ago

City Leadership

As a Hoover resident, I think we should increase property taxes for SCHOOLS and ask for the State to increase the lid.

On the spending side, the projections of the huge deficit come mainly from increasing the number of employees the next few years increasing personnel cost from 55m to 69m...DON’T! Hoover can control its hiring and operations. Furthermore, insulating its employees from healthcare costs with premiums rising is unfair to the residents who are being asked to pay more for revenue. Private industry typically pays 50% pf employee cost (if even that now). Perhaps, do a slow yearly increase up to 50%.

The Mayor mentioned switching from buying new vehicles every 3-5 years to a maintence model. Most larger corporations figured out that this model typically cost more. Has a cost benefit analysis been done on this change? It probably works well for fire dept trucks, but it may end up costing us more maintaining Police vehicles and etc.

Also, Hoover needs to look at cutting its charitable donations and/or support to organizarions before asking citizens to pay more. Let private donations be the source of revenue for those companies. Birmingham is threatening to pull money from MAX for mismanagement. We should do the same.

The City revenue dropped by 2%, while its EXPENSES increased by 12%. The Mayor and City Counsel need to look in the mirror. Who is the fiscal hawk at City Hall? Inquiring minds would love to know.

In Ross Bridge, residents pay $140-$150 on average per month in sewer and water. Hoover Sewer charging $36 a month for Riverchase and the surrounding area is absurd as the rest of the City subsidizes their rates from the mid-80’s.

Lastly, the City should sell the Hoover Metplex and Finley Center to a private third party, even if we lose money. That sucker is going to bleed the City for years. It will have to generate over $4.5 a year in revenue just to break even. Nobody seems to know how it is going to make that money plus. It reminds me of Visionland.

Hoover also needs to start charging everyone including residents to use the Finley center. We need revenue. Once we are in the black, then consider offering it free to residents. How can you rent it out to make money with so many using it for free?

It is hard to swallow a montly fee for garbage, but $7.5m is a big nugget out of the $120m in revenue. For $26 a month, I would be okay with that.

Lastly, I am 100% opposed to increasing the sales tax. The Amazon affect will only get worse with people paying more in taxes. Our legislature needs to change it where residents who buy something from Hoover get the sales tax in Hoover versus redistribution throughout the State of what should be our money. Can the City sue the State over that law?

Also, Hoover businesses need to follow Best Buy’s model of matching Amazon prices so people can buy local.

Just a few thoughts on a Tuesday morning.


Steve L 85 days ago

Hey Steve L

Great comments! You need to be in the City Council.

John 85 days ago

Hoover August 2018