So, do I support proposition 401 or 402? Well, I drafted them, so in a word: YES.
Here are the arguments for each. Designed to protect a citizen’s right for input.
Argument for Proposition 401
Proposition 401 will require that prior to entering into a long term lease agreement, of three years or longer, on publicly owned property, a vote of the Citizens will be required. Payson Leadership has failed to account for the Citizen’s wishes in the proposed leasing of Town assets to private and or non-profit entities.
To ensure this right of self-determination, at the local government level, and with your “Yes” vote, the Town Code will be modified to require a public vote for any lease of Town real property; such as parks, activity centers, or other Town properties. The proposition has specific exemptions for utilities, telecommunications, intergovernmental lease agreements, water department and airport commission lease agreements.
Proposition 401 does NOT preclude long term leases, stifle growth, or impede development in any fashion. It simply requires that the matter be placed before the Citizens on any project that impacts Town land via a long term lease agreement. The public lands owned by the Town are owned for the use by all the Citizens of Payson: Not for the exclusive use or benefit of a few, or the exploitation of Town lands by private entities, with little to no significant oversight potential.
The Citizens of Payson, collectively, know and can intelligently control the best and highest use of public lands. A “Yes” vote on 401 establishes and safeguards that this decision process is held exclusively by the Citizens and modifies Town Code to honor that right.
Thank you for voting “Yes” for Proposition 401, the “Transparency in Payson Lease Term Provisions.” It is the Citizen’s money, the Citizen’s land, and the Citizen’s right to vote. Voting “Yes” on 401 protects your voting rights and control over your land.
Jeffrey S. Aal, Chairman, Transparent Payson
Sponsored by “Transparent Payson.”
Argument for Proposition 402
Proposition 402 provides Citizen oversight by requiring full and complete information on source funding for Payson debt obligations. Traditionally, a ‘General Obligation’ bond would be subject to the will of the voters. Hybrid finance agreements or ‘creative debt,’ which include ‘Combination’ or ‘Double Barrel’ bonds, and long term lease agreements, are being used by governments to circumvent the input of voters as they require no direct Citizen vote.
Proposition 402 will prevent the use of such financial instruments, at the local level, without a direct vote of the Citizens who are ultimately responsible for the debt. Proposition 402 will provide greater transparency in the finance details of local government debt.
To ensure this right of representation, to protect Citizens input on expenditure of tax dollars, and with your “Yes” vote on 402, the Town Code will be modified to require a direct vote for any form of ‘debt’ incurred by the Town that is backed in part, or in whole, by your tax dollars when the debt exceeds one million ($1,000,000.00) dollars. The Proposition does NOT prevent fully funded debt, such as ‘Revenue Bonds,’ being issued.
Fiscal responsibility is the key to long term growth and development. The Citizens of Payson, as taxpayers, are best able to authorize expenditures or impose fiscal control. Voting “Yes” on 402 establishes and safeguards that the decision making process is held exclusively by the Citizens on matters of long term debt in excess of one million dollars, regardless of how the debt is structured.
Thank you for voting “Yes” on Proposition 402, the “Transparency in Payson Debt Obligation Ordinance.” It is the Citizen’s money, and the Citizen’s right to vote. Voting “Yes” on 402 protects your input on government spending.
Jeffrey S. Aal, Transparent Payson
Sponsored by “Transparent Payson.”