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Loopholes, Lies and Apathy

That is the best description I can give to the lastest from Sioux Falls city hall. I helped break this story, I first pressured Stormland TV news to do a story about it and they did their usual 5 minutes of digging. I want to applaud Ellis for taking a few months on this story to get it right;

Almost a year into the deal, developers had paid $301,000 in fees through November, or only 5 percent of what officials estimated they would pay into the arterial streets program this year. Through November, taxpayers had contributed $2.5 million to the program.

Oh, but it gets better;

What happened? Bad timing played a part. On Sept. 15, 2008, the same day the council voted on the tax and fee increases, Wall Street investment bank Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy, sending the nation’s financial system barreling off a cliff. Banks clamped down on lending, and development screeched to a halt.

Ironically, Lehman’s bankruptcy was brought up the night of the vote by a citizen, but apparently the 4 councilors and mayor that voted for the tax increase were too busy watching TV to listen (councilor Quen Be De Knudson, who consistently brags about how hard she works was busted watching the Olympics during public testimony).

“The developers,” City Finance Director Eugene Rowenhorst said, “are not doing that much nowadays.”

Thanks for the observation, short-timer.

But officials say there are other reasons for the big drop-off in development fees. Builders rushed to get land platted or replatted ahead of Jan. 1, 2009, when the new fees kicked in.

Imagine that, they promoted the new plan, then gamed the system. Maybe I should have bought all of my groceries for 2009 on December 31, 2008. Golly, I feel really stupid now.

But behind the scenes, some builders were upset with the city. Sioux Falls, they argued, was not moving fast enough to upgrade roads and utilities in areas primed for development. The lack of basic infrastructure was slowing growth.

Then pony up. If the city isn’t building a new road to your new development, build it yourself, or STFU. It’s not the ‘City’s money’ that builds new roads, it’s ‘My money’ that builds new roads.

Throughout much of 2007 and part of 2008, a group of developers met regularly with city officials to hash out a plan that would allow the city to spend more money on arterial roads and basic infrastructure.

This is news to me, but no surprise. As usual, joe-six-pack doesn’t have a say in the matter.

The first attempt at raising the sales tax failed in May 2008 on a 5-3 vote. Undeterred, city officials brought the package back a few months later. This time the council split 4-4, allowing Munson to cast the deciding vote.

Munson just couldn’t let it die, he just had to have that extra .08%. I betcha he lost sleep over the fact that he wasn’t charging the citizens of this city the maximum amount he could.

Munson said he would do it again. The tax increase and platting fees are in place and will begin generating more revenue when the economy picks up.

“You make decisions with the best information you have,” he said. “You don’t look at that vote of raising the second penny as immediate. It really was presented as a long-term solution.”

Where’s my f’ing shovel? The information you had was this; Major financial institutions were failing, development was down, the economy was down. This had nothing to do with roads, this had to do with your GREED!

Scott Ehrisman, a Sioux Falls resident who opposed the tax increase, said he’s not surprised the deal hasn’t worked as advertised. The city put up a Web site promoting the idea that taxpayers and developers would work together to pay for growth. Ehrisman calls that a ruse by city officials who wanted to raise taxes to their maximum.

Ehrisman notes that the city tried to raise the same tax in 2005 to pay for a recreation center, but the voters said no. This time, the voters didn’t have a say.

“I don’t believe the tax increase had anything to do with arterial roads,” he said. “They were planning on building those arterial roads with or without that tax increase.”

Ehrisman said the .08 percent increase should be rescinded until the development community has recovered enough to begin paying what the city promised it would pay.

“Developers have a choice,” he said. “They don’t have to build. They don’t have to pay the fees. But we have to pay the taxes.”

I also told Ellis that I believe someone ‘lied’ along the way. Don’t know who, but this was a freaking boondoggle from the beginning.

“I believe eventually we’ll get back to those historical growth rates that we had estimated to make this 60-40 split work,” Munson said.

Yeah, Dave, and Vernon Brown will be mayor, and the Unicorn Rainbow park will be built, the calendar will turn back to 1955 and monkeys will fly out of my ass. Do you really think people believe your bullshit? I know you are a self processed tea-toddler but I’m starting to wonder.

Long term, when the industry recovers, the split between taxpayers and developers will even out, predicts Chuck Point, a vice president with Ronning Cos.

“The market goes up and down,” he said. “The estimates of what the city might pay and what the developers might pay were just that – estimates. They were brought forth by the city, not the developers.”

Yeah, Chuck, because everything the developers have presented so far has been rock solid . . . . and BTW, if these were just ‘estimates’ can I tell a store clerk the next time I buy something, “I know I owe you an extra 8 cents, but I don’t have it, so let’s consider this close enough, because, yah know, this tax increase was just based on ‘estimates’.”

Some developers have tried to avoid the fees by claiming their changes are “minor plats,” which are not subject to the new fees.

“We’re trying to redefine our definition more clearly of what is a minor plat,” Huwe said. “Now, everybody comes in and says, ‘Here’s my minor plat.’ And we say, ‘No, it’s not.’ “

You tell em’ Huwe. “Because, like, we have to start cracking down on you fellas since this story is in the newspaper and all.”

Is the City of Sioux Falls scrambling to fix a big freaking mess?

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I have held off on this story for awhile, but I will give you a tidbit today, until I hear more. It was no mistake that platting fees came in way under projection this past year, but it’s not because of developers but because of the city. According to rumors I have heard the city started looking into the low numbers and discovered that developers found a loophole in the fee collection and the city just became aware of it recently, now the city is scrambling to fix it and the developers are not one bit too happy about it. I could give two-shits either way, my concern is since taxpayers were forced to pay their fair share by only one vote by our mayor we should either get a refund or put the money in a savings account until the platting fees catch up, or suspend the tax all together. We were duked into the tax increase by the city’s planning office and I don’t think it is fair that we pay a tax that was based on a lie.

More of this story to come. I’m assuming the City Council will have to vote on any changes and I guarantee their will be a shitstorm when that happens. I’ll keep you posted.

The City of Sioux Falls reveals their lies

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Today at the SF city council informational meeting there was a presentation of the arterial street plans for 2010-11. As South DaCola reported this week, the developers haven’t put in their fair share. Councilor Staggers questions the city department head about it, and that person reveals that platting fees have brought in $258,000 to date and the .08 cent tax increase has brought in “around $2.09 million”. Staggers then asks who will be paying for the project if the platting fees are not matching the taxpayer’s contribution. (paraphrasing) “I thought the developers were going to share 50% of the cost, that’s what we were told,” Staggers. The city official responds, (paraphrasing) “NO, we did not say that, that was simply a formula we used to get to the $10 million dollar number.”

A formula? More like a load of F’ing Crap!

WE WERE LIED TO in order to RAISE OUR TAXES, AND YES, WE WILL BE PAYING FOR A MAJORITY OF THESE ROADS.

City of Sioux Falls plans to start on arterial street projects in 2010 even though developers haven’t held up their end of the bargain

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Just another boondoggle in the making.

I noticed that Item #25 of the city council meeting was a resolution approving the arterial street development schedule for 2010.

A RESOLUTION ESTABLISHING THE PRIORITY ORDER OF PROJECTS TO BE CONSTRUCTED IN 2010 UTILIZING THE CAPITAL IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM’S ARTERIAL STREET EXPANSION (DEVELOPMENT DRIVEN STREET) PROJECTS.

I find this quite sad and comical considering that we were told when our taxes were increased to pay for these roads that developers would be putting in 50%. Kind of wonder where that 50% will be coming from considering as of August the financial numbers were (page 2);

From the .08 cent increase; $1,815,000

From platting fees; $116,000

But even if you want to get technical, if you want to take the ‘Total’ of the entire second penny, it does not get much better;

From the .92 cent tax; $27,000,000

From platting fees; $434,000

The crux of all this, according to councilor Costello, is that we are $137 million dollars behind on road maintenance in Sioux Falls. Why would we be building NEW streets for developers (who are not ponying up their share) instead of fixing what we have first? Once the developers put in their 50% and we are caught up reasonably on maintenance, then let’s talk building roads outside of Tea, SD.

Once again, the public was lied to, and we will end up picking up the tab for the special interests. Pathetic.

Councilor Staggers reveals the hypocritical and out of touch mayor and council in Sioux Falls

I can’t believe Kermit was able to be this concise in so few words. Read it twice and make yourself a drink first (From the Argus Leader);

Business activity in Sioux Falls is down, the office building occupancy rate is at a record low, city sales tax revenue is down, unemployment is up, and more people out of necessity are visiting the Banquet and Food Pantry to obtain free food. In the midst of this economic downturn and suffering, city government probably will spend a record-breaking amount of money this year, and next year’s spending on the city’s operations budget will be 4 percent higher than this year.

Sioux Falls 2009 budget is a little over a half-billion

While Sioux Falls has a reputation for being a caring, compassionate community in which neighbors help each other during difficult times, unfortunately, the same cannot be said about the actions of city government.

Yes, it is a caring community. But something I learned a long time ago, two things have factored into this giving 1) Giving money instead of time 2) A tax write-off

During this time of economic recession, city government has placed additional financial burdens on citizens by increasing the sales tax, the property tax, water fees, sewer fees, platting fees, food inspection fees, signage fees, in addition to placing special tax assessments on numerous properties. Common sense dictates that when people are suffering from layoffs, firings and reduced wages, taxes and fees should not be raised but instead reduced or at least remain the same.

In turn, it forces retailers to raise their prices to keep up, which results in higher prices of goods, and higher retail taxes.

As a bare minimum the city should not raise property taxes next year. An Aug. 4 Argus Leader editorial agreed: “The 2010 budget offers a unique chance to hold the line on property tax increases.” Ignoring economic sense and the advice of the Argus Leader, two amendments to prohibit a city property tax increase were not even debated or voted on by the Sioux Falls City Council.

Which was very disappointing. Councilor Costello ‘pretends’ to be concerned about rising taxes and the recession, but when he has an opportunity to stop the silly increase, he is silent. Big surprise. Not.

On the other hand, time was devoted to debating the merits of spending $1,720,100 of taxpayer money on a new golf clubhouse and pond rehabilitation project at Prairie Green Golf Course. An amendment to delete the clubhouse project was overwhelmingly defeated by a vote of 7-1.

I agree with Kermit this is a silly expenditure for a city during a recession, but, the golf courses do make money for the city. But the way they spend those profits are flawed. The golf course should be able to have an endowment to build clubhouses without coming to the city.

Many people wonder why the City Council appears more concerned about spending for a golf clubhouse that would benefit the few, but it rejects any attempt to stop a property tax increase that would benefit most of the city’s population, including homeowners, business owners and renters (who pay the property tax in their rent). Simply, the answer is that the City Council is living in its own artificial world that consists of council members, the mayor, department heads and those individuals who have frequent contact with the city such as developers.

This one sentence alone explains our city government in a nutshell. I am not saying this because I know Kermit. I am saying this because I have seen, and still see the different levels of economic status in our community. A majority of our residents are lower middle-class or below. That’s the facts Jack. When the Gargoyle Leader cheerleads for more minorities and women on the council, they are missing the point, they need more working class, they are the ones not being represented, no matter what color or gender they are. They also need to give the middle finger to the developers and special interests. Government is set up to protect and serve the GENERAL PUBLIC not the RICH PUBLIC, that’s why we ALL pay taxes.

In this closed world, city officials embrace a progressive viewpoint that supports property tax increases each year and the building of expensive facilities such as the golf clubhouse at Prairie Green in order to enhance the city’s reputation for having quality facilities.

Not sure if Kermit was being sarcastic, but I don’t think blowing my taxes on stuff to benefit the Haves is ‘progressive’, as James Carville would say, it is ‘regressive’.

In the City Council’s artificial world, any references to real people being hurt by property tax increases are simply ignored.

They really live in another world, and I am not saying that to bring weight to Kermit’s statements. I watch the council meetings religiously, and I am shocked by the ‘Penthouse’ statements made by our councilors, even by the ones who don’t live in the Penthouse, but aspire.

This includes the real-life story of a widow living in Sioux Falls on a fixed income in a modest 1,000-plus square-foot house who worries that she might lose her home because she cannot afford the annual property tax increases. And there is the example of a single Sioux Falls mother working at three jobs to support her children while also trying to stay in their home despite property tax increases.

One story?! Shit, Kermit, I could tell you more then you want to hear.

In sharp contrast to the Sioux Falls City Council is Rapid City’s City Council staying in touch with the public by voting against a property tax increase. Furthermore, the mayor of Rapid City declared in the Sept. 22 Argus Leader: “We understand that times are tough and everyone needs to tighten the purse strings as much as possible, and I think the city government is no exception.”

I remember reading this and going, “Hank, please send that memo to Dave. PLEASE!!!!!!”

Now is the time for my fellow members on the Sioux Falls City Council to break out of their closed, artificial world and finally get in touch with the real people of Sioux Falls. Now is the time for Sioux Falls to follow the example of Rapid City and stop raising property taxes every year.

Kermit, I like you, and that advice is swell, but it will never happen. Maybe we should invite them to Borrowed Bucks to have a drink and discuss, hopefully the cops won’t have to show up to break up the fight, either way, they know the address.

UPDATE: Is Sioux Falls weathering the recession? Not sure.

UPDATE: After watching the City Council informational meeting today, I have to clarify this post. According to Eugene ‘Montgomery Burns’ Rowenhorst, the reason the June numbers are so low is that the State Department of Revenue cut tax collection 4 days short of the end of the month (June) and added that revenue to July due to end of the year accounting purposes. Not sure we can make much up in 4 days, but according to Gene, the July numbers are good. He admitted that we are -1% down from last year. In other words we are still not showing any growth this year.

I was afraid of this, and if the numbers continue, we may be in trouble. I have been saying that the recession will hit Sioux Falls late and stay longer. For example, in the early 90’s when the rest of the country was pulling out of the Reaganomics disaster, it took SF until the late 90’s before it starting pulling out. The problem we have with SF is since we all live pretty modest lifestyles it takes us a lot longer to pull out of economic downturns. And I’m not talking about business, I’m talking about the people who pay 90% of the taxes in this city, consumers. The June budget numbers are pretty shocking actually. They are as follows (these are aproximates);

TAX COLLECTION

2009 – $3,785,594

2009 – $7,435,005

We are now down from last year (total budget) by approximately $3.7 million (-7.6%)

And the platting fees and arterial road tax (.08%) don’t look any better (These are as of June);

Tax $1,140,091 (Total 1 cent is at $18 million)

Fees $48,112 (Total platting is at $345,000)

And if you look at July in 2009 the numbers are very high also, so I am assuming that we may see the same thing next month. Of course we had a huge impact from the Soccer tournament (supposedly) so the numbers may be okay – time will only tell.

When I watched Munson’s budget address I think he cut the budget by $60 million from last year, but don’t quote me on that. What is frustrating about this is that Munson squandered our tax dollars over the past 7 years on ‘Legacy’ projects and now he is trying to play catchup with infrastructure in a down economy. We should have stayed on top of it all along. Cities should follow a simple rule, roads and infrastructure maintenance first, playgrounds second.

I feel sorry for the next mayor, they will be working some long hours trying to figure out this mess.

Miscalculations? Recession? or lies?

When the city council decided to raise our taxes last Semptember they promised two things. 1) That the extra revenue of .08% would go into a special fund that would only be spent on arterial roads 2) That the developers would be paying 50% of that tab through platting fees. Even with the economy down and the city not being able to raise $10 million for the roads doesn’t mean that developers should be off the hook for their half of the bargain. But it seems like they think they are, and the city isn’t doing a damn thing about it.

In my interview yesterday I reiterated that the night of the increase vote that we told councilors a recession was coming, they didn’t care. It was pretty obvious that night as it is today that the four councilors who voted for the increase, Knudson, Brown, Jamison, Litz and Mayor Munson, were bought and paid for through campaign donations by the developers, one of which I busted cracking jokes about citizens testifying against the increase in the bathroom that night. The same guy who was crying and blaming the recession and the economy last night on the boob tube. Pretty funny now, isn’t it?

Here’s some highlights in the story that seem to prove they knew all along that the developers were not going to pony up;

“There’s a good supply of land platted and until that land becomes to be matured, meaning there is rooftops on it, additional land does not need to be platted,” Cotter said.

So, then, why did we need to increase taxes in 2009 to build roads we may not need until 2010 or 2011?

We have a million dollars more in the fund today than we would have had before. We can always take the negative approach to everything and it really wouldn’t matter in the long term. We don’t build our company and I don’t think Sioux Falls builds their city, and I don’t think any bona fide business person is going to say, ‘Well, I build my company one year at a time,'” Craig Lloyd of Lloyd Companies said.

Craig’s comment is very revealing. 1) He is right, we have a million in the fund, money we, the citizens, put in the kitty, you know, the same people you belittled that September night while taking a leak. Where is your share? I agree, a city doesn’t build itself one year at a time, but when the city and developers tell us there will be a 50/50 partnership, you better hold up your end of deal, and if you don’t, why should we?

But let’s just look at the figures;

$1,000,0000 – What the city has raised so far

$78,000 – What developers have put in so far ($70,000 was added in June to the fund)

Now lets scenario the economy turns around and those numbers triple by the end of the year;

$3,000,000 – City

$234,000 – Develop

$3,234,000 – Total December 31, 2009

But this is where it gets interesting and the city gets caught up in their lies. The CIP has $5.4 million budgeted for arterial streets next year. Where is that additional money coming from? Most likely us.

$2,166,000 shortfall (that will have to be taken out of the regular CIP fund)

That would mean while taxpayers will have to pony up $5,166,000 for arterial streets next year, developers will only be putting a fraction of that aproximately $234,000, unless of course they win the lottery.

Does that sound like a 50/50 partnership to you? Kind of sounds a bad restroom joke to me.

The Retail Tax increase ruse is finally revealed

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Last year when the Sioux Falls city council voted to raise our retail taxes they said it was for new arterial roads. They argued the extra .08% would raise $5 million for new roads and platting fees paid by developers would pay the other $5 million. A 50/50 partnership, so to speak. In recent months, I assume to downplay our tax petition, the city started to say it was going to be a 40/60 partnership instead, with the developers paying the 60%.

Well the numbers are in, and they ain’t even close to what the city is claiming. Since the tax increase took effect January 1, 2009, the extra .08% in retail taxes has collected about $1 Million dollars. In five months. Obviously it will have to pick up a bit to reach the $4 million dollar goal by the end of the year. But the alarming number is how much the developers have put in the kitty since January 1st. Let’s just say I rewinded the audio three times when finance director Eugene ‘Montgomery Burns’ Rowenhorst mumbled the amount at yesterday’s informational meeting; $8,000 dollars! Nope, you heard right, not $800,000 dollars, $8,000 in five months!  I think the Boy Scouts could raise more than that in just one week selling popcorn.

I said this tax increase was a ruse from the beginning to max out our taxes, it had nothing to do with building those roads. And if the developers are going to chip in 60% to build arterial roads, they better turn it up a notch, because at that rate, they won’t have enough money to build one block let alone several streets.

As usual, Sioux Falls taxpayers will have to pony up 90% of the money for the roads. And as usual, Munson’s administration misled and lied to the public to raise our taxes.

Shameful.

ANOTHER THING THAT WAS BROUGHT UP, in the meeting by Rowenhorst was how much of our Capital Improvement fund goes toward debt service (paying interest and principal on bonds); 22%. Just imagine all the roads we could fix if we weren’t throwing those millions away on interest payments? By rough estimates I’m guessing we pay about $25 million in interest/principal payments a year, just on our CIP projects. Ironically, Eugene bragged that 22% was a good number, he said the city’s credit rating could allow us to be paying 44% out in debt service.

Where do they get these clowns anyway? Oh that’s right Rowenhorst and Munson worked for Citibank, that explains it all.

Tax and Fee increases only hurt growth

Monday night’s (Sept 15) tax and fee increases were a disappointment to say the least. But there were many things that happened Monday night that have citizens asking even more questions than before the vote.

 

• Councilor Costello’s amendment asking the city to cut $5 million from the budget so we would not have had to increase the sales tax was not only the right thing to do, it was good clean common sense government. Four of the councilors supported the amendment, the rest and the mayor did not. I also want to note that Costello is an accountant and business owner and has an intelligent grasp on economics. Also it is prudent to point out that the four councilors and mayor who voted against the cuts have had their election campaigns funded by special interests who will benefit greatly by the sales tax increase and new roads.

 

• The legal question behind whether the developer platting fees were a tax was a valid one considering the person asking the question, Dr. Kermit Staggers holds a PHD in political science. During the council meeting Councilor Staggers read from SD Codified Law, which clearly stated this was a tax and not a fee (with the exception of one word, in which the city attorney used as his argument against Staggers). And if it was a tax, it needed to be voted on and approved by the people. The city attorney disagreed. Though the city attorney has mountains of law experience, being a former judge and all, he can certainly manipulate his opinion to fit a political agenda. Let’s remember who appointed him to judgeship – Bill Janklow, enough said.

 

• But last but not least, the use of the taxpayer money to lobby for a tax increase using city employees and funds to design and maintain a website is unconscionable. I believe that the citizens deserve a refund. May I suggest the mayor and the four councilors who voted for the increase refund us out of their paychecks?

 

I have heard that some citizens may be weighing their options to stop these increases from being implemented. They won’t take effect until January 1, 2009 so there is some time. What can be done? I’m not sure, but here are some ideas that have been floating around;

 

• Propose a citizen’s Initiative that says the city cannot raise sales tax without citizen’s vote and approval. Also, start buying as many products and services online from other states and countries that don’t charge a sales tax, essentially boycotting the sales tax.

 

• Challenge the fee/tax question and ask the attorney general to render an opinion on it.

 

• Sue the City of Sioux Falls for using taxpayer’s money to lobby for a tax increase.

 

Some may wonder why citizens would want to fight so hard to stop these increases. It’s simple really, now is not the time to raise taxes and fees. I think councilor Staggers said it best during Monday night’s meeting, we need to be a competitive government, that’s what will inspire growth. That means keeping fees and taxes low. It seems some bureaucrats in City Hall think the trickle down economics of Ronald Reagan and both Bushes is the way to go – yeah, that really worked out well for the middle class, didn’t it?

The day after the vote

AFB (American Freedom Press) reporter, Kyl Kwat called Sioux Falls mayor and city councilors Tuesday morning to get their reaction on last night’s sales tax increase.

Councilor Brown was disappointed that Costello wanted to cut funding to the Parks and Rec department to offer an alternative to the sales tax increase.

“I just felt it would really cut into the quality of life the parks bring to our city and I was damned if he was going to stop the construction of our newest park, The Unicorn and Rainbow Gardens. This project has been near and dear to me, and it would just break my heart not to see those unicorns dancing with children in plush fields of butterflies and leprechauns .”

Councilor Costello had this to say about Vernon’s opposition to his alternative funding package;

“Is he still whining about that stupid Unicorn park? That guy really needs pull those rainbow dreams out of his a . . !”

We questioned Mayor Munson as to why he felt it was necessary to gavel a citizen who pointed out that the board of ethics was politically appointed.

Munson: “He’s just flat wrong!”

Kwat: “But they are appointed by you, correct?”

Munson: “Yes.”

Kwat: “and you are a politician that belongs to a political party, correct?”

Munson: “Yes.”

Kwat: “Well wouldn’t that make them political appointees?”

Munson: “POINT OF ORDER! POINT OF ORDER!”

We called councilor Knudson at 11:00 am and apparently woke her up.

“Why are you calling so early? I’m exhausted!” Knudson replied.

We told her it was 11 am, and she apologized, “I’m just out of it, you know that little troll that comes to all the meetings just goes on and on about citizen’s rights, the First Amendment, blah, blah, blah and it gets really tiring. My normal nightly routine is watching a rerun of Golden Girls and hitting the hay at 7:15 pm. You’d think with all the time I put into the meetings I was getting paid to be there or something?”

Kwat: “Aren’t you?”

“Silly boy! $17,000 a year? That barely covers the detailing on my Trans Am convertible for the year!” Exclaimed Knudson.

We called councilor Beninga’s home and got this message from his answering machine: “This is Gerald. Thank You for calling. I voted No. Bye.”

Councilor Litz, though mostly silent through much of the proceedings last night had this to say, “I voted yes on this, because I’m for progress and against citizens, no, I mean, I’m for street closures, no, I mean I’m for new streets, and car lots and, five cars for my kids. You know I buy a lot of groceries . . . and nails, you know? Because I like to eat and build houses.”

Jamison seemed confused why so many citizens were against a tax increase to build new arterial streets. “How else is my family business going to make money?” Greg pronounced, “There is only so much commission my wife makes on selling $895,000 homes! Besides her hobby real estate business hardly helps to make ends meet. Good thing I get that $17,000 a year to serve on the council, them beauty bills from the salons and spas are getting steeper every year. Inflation you know?”

Kermit Staggers still sounded frustrated about the question of whether the platting fees were really a tax. “You have a city attorney, a mayor and unicorn boy who have no regard for the law, or for a citizen’s right to vote on the issue. I had to read them South Dakota codified law during the meeting because I still think they do not understand that it was a tax and not a fee.”

Kwat: “What did you think of their reaction to you reading the law?”

“Reaction?! I think De was asleep, Litz was eating a cookie, and Vernon was day dreaming of licking creamsicles on cotton candy clouds.”

But Anderson’s comments were very telling. “I think sitting on the city of Detroit’s council would be less controversial. At least they have sex, drugs and rock & roll to get them through the day, and that’s just on their Blackberries.”

ON A SIDE NOTE: We also want to recognize that Iraqi immigrant and director of the multi-cultural center, Quadir Aware spoke at the council meeting thanking the councilors and the mayor for cleaning up the SEX in Falls Park.*

*(though most this article is complete bullshit, that statement is not.)