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Not this Maps! Firefighters and Police Coalition Against MAPS3 Website
Top 10 Reasons to Kill the Maps Tax
1. A Tax Cut Will Stimulate Oklahoma City’s Economy with $80-90 Million in Additional Sales
Voting “NO” gives a tax cut to Oklahoma City taxpayers starting April 1, 2010. Tax savings will be about $10 a month per person, or $500 a year for a family of four. Most of this will be spent in OKC for goods and services taxpayers need and desire. A $80-90 million sales increase will be a big boost to local businesses, helping employment as well.
2. Sales Taxes Are Regressive
Proportionally, sales taxes place a heavier burden on lower income families. The OKC Elite want to increase the value of their downtown properties with more taxpayer subsidies. Those who least benefit have done enough for them!
3. New Maps Projects Will Drive the City Operating Budget Deeper in the Hole
Maps3 funds capital expenditures only, with no provision for increased operating and maintenance costs. For example, estimated operating costs for the street car are $3.5 million and the park $3 million. Moreover, even though OKC’s population has grown, police and fire protection have not kept pace. We’re short 200 police officers and 50 fire fighters. The City Council has called for 2% across the board spending cuts starting January, 2010. Further cuts are likely for the following year. The projected budget shortfall for five years is $10 million.
4. Maps3 is a City Council Slush Fund .
The Maps3 Tax is a blank check signed by the taxpayers. The MAP3 ordinance contains NO content. Instead, it refers to an
Exhibit “A” that expresses their “intent,” with no priorities or costs of projects stipulated. Five votes on the Council can redefine
this “intent” at any time. The MAP3 program is totally fluid and subject to change.
5. Mick Cornett’s Maps3 Numbers are as Fraudulent as Harry Reid’s Obamacare Numbers.
Cornett claims Maps3 will collect $100 million a year ($777 million for 93 months). OKC’s highest annual sales tax revenue for a penny of sales tax was $92.5 million, years before the financial crisis. 2009 sales tax revenues have declined for 9 months in a row. November’s distribution was 12.3% less than the same month a year ago. Further, the NBA Tax (Maps for Millionaires) is falling short about $8-10 million when it expires in March, 2010. Those funds are already committed and must be made up out from the overstretched general fund. This is a primary reason for the 2% budget cut.
6. The Most Popular Projects Are Used to Sell the Least Popular .
Early polls showed the most support was for the least expensive projects – outdoor facilities and sidewalks. Least citizen support was for a new convention center to replace the renovated Cox Center.
7. The Smaller Projects Will Be Cut First
Smaller, more popular projects will be eliminated first. A new convention center or $22 million per mile streetcar can’t be easily shaved. But those have more political support from the OKC Elite and Downtown Property Developers.
8. A “Temporary” Tax Needs to Expire.
If it doesn’t expire, it is not temporary. When special interests speak of “keeping the momentum alive,” they really mean”let’s not let the tax expire; we might not get it back.” The OKC Elite intend to keep extending the Maps Tax forever!
9. The Economy Continues to Slow. More Taxes Will Make it Worse
Economic statistics are bleak and getting worse. Foreclosures, bankruptcies and unemployment continue to worsen. The State of Oklahoma faces a $1 billion shortfall next year. Oklahoma City must cut spending by 2% in January. A new OSU study expects little or no growth in 2010 in a “jobless recovery.” Oklahoma’s unemployment is up to 7.2%. Taxpayers need a break! Oklahoma City needs the boost in spending from a tax cut. We don’t need more taxes!
10. New Convention Center Will NOT Spur Economic Growth and Recovery. It’s Magical Thinking
The proposed $280 million is just little more than half of the projected total costs. Another $250 million is needed to “finish” the project. University of Texas Professor Dr. Heywood Sanders published several studies that cast severe doubts on the “build it and they will come” model of building new convention centers to create economic growth.
He says there has been a huge increase in the supply of convention space over the last 10 to 15 years, with no corresponding increase in business. Since the late 1990s, convention-generated business has been on a downward slide. During that same time, the number of cities and amount of convention center floor space skyrocketed, with an increase in nearby hotel rooms. But since 1996, the number
of convention attendees dropped. The current rate of attendance is at 1993 levels. The sagging economy, better and faster modes of transportation, teleconferencing, and convention expense contribute to lower convention business. It is magical thinking to believe replacing the renovated Cox center makes economic sense.
This is a citizens’ grassroots effort. Please copy & share these facts with your neighbors.
Make sure you and your friends vote NO December 8th!
Download this flyer and more information at www.KillTheMapsTax.com