Know your public finance; the Whirled doesn't


The Tulsa Whirled editorial board yesterday endorsed the "vision" plan which the County Commission will consider on Monday. They insisted on calling it "four bond issues," which displays their ignorance of municipal finance. The proposals being discussed are sales tax increases.

The Whirled writers have repeatedly failed to maintain the distinction between these two instruments of local government finance. It's an important distinction, because they impose different burdens on the taxpayers.

In common language, "bond issue" refers to a general obligation bond issue. When voters approve general obligation bond issues, the result is a property tax increase to repay the bonds, which are issued against the full faith and credit of the issuing government.

A sales tax increase may result in the issuance of bonds, but these are revenue bonds, pledged against the revenues received from the added amount of tax. Essentially the local government borrows against future receipts so they can spend the money before it's all collected.

If you can't trust the Whirled editorial board to get such a simple detail right, can you trust them to get anything right?

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on July 3, 2003 2:32 AM.

The Tulsa Time Blues was the previous entry in this blog.

Thanks for the compliment! is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.



Subscribe to feed Subscribe to this blog's feed:
[What is this?]