Nursing 4 less

Most Think County Board Should Tax Less for Nursing Home
April 14, 2015 – 07:51 am

Results from poll asking how much the McHenry County Board should ask in taxes for the county nursing home (Valley Hi).McHenry County has a nursing home called Valley Hi.

It has a huge surplus.

Over $40 million. ($40.8 million at the end of July; $37.8 million at the end of August, 2014.)

The annual budget is $10-11 million and the operation is so efficient that it pretty much breaks even.

Yet. the McHenry County Board keeps levying more and more taxes.

McHenry County Blog decided to ask Republicans their opinions on the level of taxation for the nursing home.

Below is the question:

Question 7: McHenry County has a nursing home with over $40 million in the bank, yet the County Board is thinking about taxing $3 million more next year. The annual budget is $10-11 million and nearly breaks even. If the County does not collect the $3 million next year, it can never collect it again. Which of the following choices best represents your opinion?

PRESS 1 if you believe we should collect $3 million more in taxes.

PRESS 2 if you believe we should collect nothing for the nursing home next year.

PRESS 3 if you believe we should do something in between.

PRESS 4 if you are undecided

The results, as you can see above, show that almost 42% of respondents think the County should not tax one dime next year.

Only 11.3% think the County Board should tax as much as it taxed last year–$3 million.

Another 17.8% believe the County Board should extract something between nothing and $3 million.

It’s a complicated issue, so it’s not too surprising that 29.1% are undecided.

The issue is driven not by need for the tax dollars.

With $40 million in the bank and a budget that pretty much breaks even, figure out how many years it would take to spend down to one year’s expenditures on $10-11 million.

The problem is that, under the Tax Cap, once a tax levy is reduced, it cannot be raised unless the voters approve such an increase by referendum.

Clearly, a majority of the County Board in recent years do not believe they can convince voters to pass a referendum some years from now when the surplus might be depleted.

If you would like to express your opinion on this subject, you should first call the members of the Finance Committee (which are no longer listed in the County Clerk’s Yearbook):

  • Mike Skala, Chmn – 847-669-3804 or 847-417-4323
  • Jim Heisler, VC – 815-459-1971 or 815-459-0171
  • Yvonne Barnes – 847-516-2719
  • Mary McCann – 815-568-1961 or 815-245-9282
  • Nick Provenzano – 815-355-8540
  • Larry Smith – 815-353-8043
  • Chuck Wheeler – 847-354-3693 or 815-307-8525

It should also be noted that the County Board put out three calls for applicants to serve on the Valley Hi Operating Board. Apparently the one of the applicants was not deemed to be willing to go along with those who wish to continue levying taxes that are not needed in the foreseeable future, so someone else had to be convinced to apply. And was selected.

= = = = =
647 replies are included in the poll, meaning 534 favored the County Board’s putting the question on the ballot.

Interesting facts
Dr. Michael B. Cox (born 1954, Bolling AFB, Washington D.C.) is an Adjunct Professor of Counseling and Psychology at several graduate programs for university satellite campuses located in Central Florida (e.g. Webster University, Troy University, Barry University, etc.).
Thus far Dr. Cox has had a rather diverse career. Enlisting in the Air...
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