Your share of the cost for new bond the city floated at the last City Council meeting was $301.26.

What? You didn’t know the city floated another bond?

It was all done in a perfectly legal manner, complete with hearings, resolutions and votes.

Never mind that a $2 million bond issue was item E of a 13-part Consent Agenda item (as opposed to a self-standing agenda item).

It strikes me as — odd — that such a big expenditure didn’t even merit its own agenda item. But there it is, tucked in amidst a National Day of Prayer Proclamation, a liquor license application for Jordan Baseball, a Special Event Permit Application — Lagoon Park Rental, and, well, you get the general drift. One thing to remember. That magnificent bond rating the Council talks about is not based on the city’s ability to pay. It’s based on the city’s ability to tax.

From the bonding agenda sub-item: “. . . the City will pledge its full faith and credit and power to levy direct general ad valorem taxes.” Ad valorem is a Latin way of saying “according to value.” Guess who sets the value of your home.

Now, I’m not going to debate the value to the community of the bond being issued for street work. But I’ll say this. It seems to me that a multi-million dollar bond should rate a separate agenda item. That it didn’t tells me something about how city government values our tax dollars.

It also seems to me such a big expenditure would come complete with every i dotted, and every t crossed. Alas, such is not the case with the “Extract of Minutes of Meeting of the City Council of the City of Jordan, Scott County, Minnesota.”

This is a form, presented as part of the documentation for passing the bond issue. The form purports to detail a Council action taken on April 19, 2021.

Where the form calls out Council Members present, none are listed.

Where the form calls out Council Members absent, none are listed.

Where the form calls out the Council Member who moved to adopt the reading, none is listed.

Unless one accepts hearsay (always a chancy proposition), it’s virtually impossible in this town to find out who voted how on most agenda items. No big deal, I suppose, since most votes are unanimous anyway.

Elsewhere on the form I read: “I, the undersigned, being duly qualified and acting City Administrator of the City of Jordan, Minnesota, hereby certify that I have carefully compared the attached and foregoing extract of the minutes of a regular meeting of the City Council of the City held Monday, April 19, 2021, with the original minutes on file in my office and the extract is a full, true and correct copy of the minutes, insofar as they relate to the issuance and sale of approximately $2,010,000 General Obligation Bonds, Series 2012 of the City.

Witness my hand as City Administrator and the corporate seal of the City this (blank) day of (blank), 2021.

(blank)

City Administrator

City of Jordan, Minnesota”

Once again, regardless of the merits of the bond issue, attaching a blank form to the agenda item for a $2 million bond issue strikes me as odd, and maybe lazy.

It must be OK though. The Council passed the bond issue without comment.

My figures are based on a U.S. Census Bureau projection that the current population of Jordan is 6,672. That’s a generous projection that softens the blow just a little.

The Quote: “We don’t pay taxes. Only the little people pay taxes.” -Leona Helmsley

Thom Boncher is a retired marketing communications manager, former Jordan City Council member and Jordan resident since 2003.

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