Follow the Money

Here’s hoping that the Trib will follow its own advice of a couple days ago and “Follow the Money.” It was a pointed complaint about the City of Duluth’s 14% tax increase (which pales compared to the 56% increase in Duluth School Costs last year which will continue to climb over the course of the Red Plan).

I’ve already pointed out that the District is losing up to two million a year in state revenue from students fleeing to other districts from open enrollment. I’ve pointed out that the District’s energy costs might spiral out of control since it bought Johnson Controls mislabeled Humvee energy plan (JCI said it was a Prius)

Here’s the question. Its so simple its not even worthy to be asked on the TV show “Are you smarter than a fifth grader?”

If the Red Plan will cost district taxpayers over $400 million (including interest) over its twenty year payback lifetime (I’m rounding the cost down to 400 to keep the problem simple. I really hate remainders). How much will its average cost be each year over twenty years?

Bear in mind that in 2008 the actual Red Plan increases listed on property tax statements was $12.5 million. So, is that close to the answer you get when you solve that tricky division problem preceding?

The Trib’s departing publisher, Steve McLister, (a big supporter of the Red Plan) recently wrote“Public employment should come as a byproduct of private growth.” Of course, the Red Plan is hardly “private” investment. Perhaps we could ask Forum Communications accountants to follow the Red Plan money and explain it to us. Their employed by the newspaper industry. They should know plenty about red ink.

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