3/15/21:  Each one of these issues has been updated on their individual pages.  Please hover over the issues tab and click on a page to see what has happened over the last year and a half. —- Jim

  1. Debt:
    • As of December 31, 2018, The City of Boonville was over 28 million dollars in debt.  This debt includes bonds, leases and interest. While debt through bonds and leases are a fact of life with municipal government, Boonville’s financial obligations have limited its ability to do some of the projects it would like to do.  Boonville has over $11 million dollars in bonds due in 2021 and will have to refinance in order to get through that period.
    • The golf course sinks further into debt.  While the current administration says that they got a good deal at $680+thousand dollars, the bond issue for sewer repairs at the course and other costs was well over $900,000.  Interest will run another $400,000 and your tax dollars, to the tune of $450,000, were loaned to the golf course to make ends meet.  This is contrary to the statements that were made at the city council meeting when the final vote was taken.  I was told directly by Councilman Byers that he had looked at the paperwork on the deal and the golf course would pay for itself with user fees and clubhouse rentals.  The paperwork on the deal was not made public.  The council has to make better decisions.
  2. Utilities:
    • While the recent water rate hike was necessary to help with aging infrastructure and debt reduction, it should have been done incrementally instead of waiting 10 years.  This makes it easier on the consumer and keeps Boonville’s cash flow at a more reasonable rate to continue to reduce debt and maintain infrastructure (See report from the IURC  https://www.in.gov/oucc/2601.htm).
    • This rate increase was just the first stage of 3 increases that the consumer will see.
  3. Maintenance
    • In 1989 Boonville was told to set up a restricted account that would be used for maintenance on the city’s 3 water towers.  After 30 years, that account has finally be set up. As of December 31, 2018 the account has a balance of $10.
    • The reluctance of more than one administration to get this account going has led to Boonville having to borrow nearly $400,000 to maintain the aging water storage tank on Millis Ave (done in 2009).  If the account had been set up when told to do so, it would have had nearly enough to pay for the job.
      • It should be noted that this job cost more than it should have due to neglect.
    • The current administration has waited 3 years to finally do something.  As part of their agreement with the IURC, the city must now put $187,000 per year into this restricted account.  This amount would have been substantially less had the account be set up even 3 years ago. As opposed to setting up this account, the city wanted to borrow a larger amount.  The IURC said no. This is just poor management.
  4. The City Website needs to be kept up to date.  Many links are broken and agendas and meeting minutes have not been updated for months.  Many of the links date to 2016 and are no longer relevant.
  5. There are no secure email accounts.  Contact to the Mayor, City Council, Clerk-Treasurer and other city officials should be directly to a website that is controlled by the City and is secure
  6. All current city ordinances should be put on the website in an organized manner so that constituents can easily access information when they have a question.
  7. A running agenda of issues to be covered at the upcoming City Council meeting should be readily accessible to the public.  Any ordinances that are to be read and/or voted on should be listed as early as possible and publicized on social media and the website.  The pattern of listing ordinances hours or even 1-2 days prior to a meeting should be avoided.