Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Council considers which residents required to pay streetlight fees The Commercial Appeal

Council considers which residents required to pay streetlight fees � The Commercial Appeal: The committee reviewed one measure Tuesday to remove the streetlight fee from bills for newly-annexed homes in Cordova that don’t yet have streetlights, with no opposition to doing so. The discussion then turned to whether residents who already pay for private streetlights through homeowners associations should be required to pay the public streetlight fee.

Last year, City Council agreed to change the billing for streetlight fees in an effort to spread the cost to all Memphis residents, not just those who pay property taxes, said Councilman Myron Lowery. Instead of the fee being assessed to property taxes, it is now part of utility bills.

However, some residents in Cordova complained they were paying a fee for a service the city had not rendered as part of its annexation responsibilities.


The coexistence of public and private local government can be dicey, particularly when it comes to determining who pays for a given service and who benefits.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Holding water companies accountable sounds good to this HOA

Holding water companies accountable sounds good to this HOA: The Summertree community in New Port Richey has been fighting its water company for more than a decade.

Homeowners Association President Rich Neilsen says poor water quality has forced homeowners to buy their own filtration systems.

"We are paying enormous funds for unsatisfactory water," Neilsen said. "The residents of this community need to buy bottled water to drink. We can't drink our water."
Private water companies don't go over well in Privatopia, Florida sector.

The Fate of a City | KUNSTLER

The Fate of a City | KUNSTLER
Interesting paragraph about doomed-to-fail condos and HOAs in this post by the author of The Geography of Nowhere, talking about how the financialization of the economy flooded New York City with money, but (Kunstler says) it is all about to dry up:

"Mayor Bloomberg was celebrated for, among other things, stimulating a new generation of skyscraper building. There is theory which states that an empire puts up its greatest monumental buildings just before it collapses. I think it is truthful. This is what you are now going to see in New York, especially as regards the empire of Wall Street finance, which is all set to blow up. The many new skyscrapers recently constructed for the fabled “one percent”— the Frank Gehry condos and the Robert A.M. Stern hedge fund aeries — are already obsolete. The buyers don’t know it. In the new era of capital scarcity that we are entering, these giant buildings cannot be maintained (and, believe me, such structures require incessant, meticulous, and expensive upkeep). Splitting up the ownership of mega-structures into condominiums under a homeowners’ association (HOA) is an experiment that has never been tried before and now we are going to watch it fail spectacularly. All those towering monuments to the beneficent genius of Michael Bloomberg will very quickly transform from assets to liabilities."