Saturday, February 13, 2010

"Ogden’s (Borrow and Spend) Economic Development Formula is Working"... or so sez Boss Godfrey

The Latest Godfrey Administration Water Bill Insert Propaganda

By Curmudgeon

"At Your Service," the Ogden City newsletter that arrives with the city utilities bill, contains the following write-up about the Administration's economic development policies. I thought it might prove interesting to those who do not get the newsletter:

Ogden’s Economic Development Formula is Working:
Ogden is better off financially than many other Utah cities.
According to recent sales tax revenue statistics published by the State of Utah, Ogden’s sales tax revenue comparison from fiscal year 2009 to 2010 is down 11.87%.
Though this is a decline, City officials are optimistic considering that during the same period, many Utah cities saw declines in their own sales tax revenue hovering around 20% and some as high as nearly 50%.
In fact, Ogden fared better than the state’s average which shows sales tax revenue down by more than 14% throughout Utah.
This was not the case after 9-11 when Ogden’s numbers plummeted more than the state average and we were slower to recover than the rest of the state. Statistics from fiscal year 2002 shows Ogden’s sales tax
revenue down (3.5%) by more than double the state’s average (1.67%). It took until fiscal year 2005 for Ogden, at an increase of 8.14%, to climb above the state average again of a 7.57% increase.
What this means for Ogden is our formula for economic development is working. The 7,000 added jobs, the hundreds of millions of dollars in new buildings, and scores of new companies within the Junction, along 25th Street, and throughout the downtown area, are all making a difference.
Though economic fear may be present in today’s consumers throughout the state, and even across the nation, Ogden area businesses are surviving and doing better than most.
As its fiscal year 2010 begins to wrap up soon, Ogden City looks forward to further economic growth and development in the next fiscal year as a proven formula for profitable success.
The full newsletter can be found online here.

Ed. Note: Differing reader opinions are eagerly invited, heheheh.


I am not buying the B.S. said...

Does this informative piece of propoganda mention when the massive debt will be paid off?

And when the taxing entities will be able to get the fair market taxes owed?

I was at the Junction last evening, and I must say that most restaurants were hopping, but The retail store fronts are still empty. It seems to me that the Fed Ex store will not support the wole retail project.

Godfrey is just beating his chest again, priming the nieve folks for another run for Mayor in approximately eighteen months.

We need to point out the costs involved with all of the not so large tax revenue short falls that the Mayor boasts.

horse puckey said...

7,000 added jobs? Yea right. Where?

Curmudgeon said...

Comment bumped to front page

Ogden Resident said...

As I recall this same verbatim article appeared in the Standard Examiner within the last month or so ago but back then as I recall it was listed as an article that was written by none other than the ace reporter within the Standard, Scott Schwebke. Now if I were the Standard, I would wonder who is plagiarizing who? Is the paper paying this guy to write articles or to just present articles that are handed off to him by the administration so he can attach his name to them?

RudiZink said...

Very interesting, Ogden Lover! The same article also appears on Boss Godfrey's personal propaganda Blog, dated 01/19/10, btw:

Economic Development formula is working in Ogden

I've searched the SE site; and I don't find it there. Perhaps you first saw the article text on Godfrey's blogsite.

OgdenLover said...

Curm, credit goes to "Ogden Resident", not me for the earlier comment.

Was the article perhaps on the City's "Information" page that is published periodically in the SE? You know the one, before elections the Mayor uses it for free electioneering.

Ogden Resident said...

Part 1

This write up I suspect is another reflection of the administration trying to put a positive spin on much a due about nothing or the deflection of something bad to come.

I would first point out that I want to know if the city is truly looking at fiscal year 2009 in comparison to fiscal 2010 since we are just into February of 2010. Ogden City has a different accounting year than most other cities in Utah and the State itself. Other cities and the State report their years financial results based on the past 12 months that end at the end of each calendar year, i.e. January 1St through December 31st. Ogden City uses a fiscal year that ends on June 30th of each year, i.e. July 1 through June 30th. Thus trying to extrapolate the information from different cities and State reports is guess work at best unless the other cities and the State are helping you with the details which I strongly doubt is the case in these comparisons.

A better way to look at these numbers is to look at the actual difference rather than the percentage difference as this is more reflective, in this case, as to how much better off or worse off the city is performing relative to the general local economy. In other word per the write up Ogden declined 11.87% where as the State declined 14%. A difference of 2.13% (14-11.87) in favor of Ogden’s performance verses the State average. Per the write up this was not the case with 9-11 (2001) where the city declined 3.5% verses the State’s decline of 1.67% or a difference of 1.83% (3.5-1.67) adversely effecting Ogden.

Restating these numbers then says that the city is 2.13% ahead of the State average in 2009 where as the city was 1.83% behind the State average in 2001. This gives a more representative difference to the numbers than what was presented by the city administration.

It should also be stated that the State’s numbers were probably better (higher) that Ogden’s in 2001 because the State (because of highway and infrastructure work) and particularly with SLC because both were in the middle of preparing for the Olympics’ thus the State numbers and SLC numbers would have been higher while any of the out lying cities from SLC would have had lower numbers other than possibly Park City.

Ogden Resident said...

Part 2

I see 2001 as a poor year to do a comparison with but it worked for the embellishment purposes that the administration wanted to put forth.

Where I find a better comparison as to how fruitful the City’s efforts have been, though somewhat dated but closer in timing than 2001, was in a report that came out just before the last Ogden City mayoral election. Included are some of those findings in that report;

“Sales tax revenue growth for all of Weber County was 6.3% in 2005 and 15.8% in 2006 while Ogden City only saw 5.5% growth in 2005 and only 8.6% in 2006.
With Ogden City representing 40% of the population of the county, Ogden is lowering the overall performance of the county in this key measurement of growth. If Ogden is below the county average, the rest of the communities within the county must perform much better economically than Ogden to bring the county average down to its current level. Clearly the hype from the administration that their efforts are paying off has not held true for the last few years when it comes to business activity or city well being.”

I find the last comment in the information provided above to be more representative of the condition and benefit of the development activities of the administration within Ogden than the latest Utility bill write up. Ogden has not seen the growth or prosperity that the administration is claiming and their purported formula for economic development is not differentiating Ogden City from other communities in the State as they would lead you to believe.

As for the 7,000 jobs that the administration has taken credit of, I would love to see the evidence, as well as the scores of new businesses (keep in mind that one score equals 20) and the administration says scores suggesting at least 40 new businesses in the downtown. I think it would be hard to prove. The only thing that I personally think the administration can really take credit for is the reduced services to residents, the increase in city indebtedness and the increase in our taxes and fees.

Horse puckey said...

You can find the State's own report on sales tax along with other taxes distribution here.
It's good for the current year and last year month by month.

And the City is almost 2 million down from last year in sales tax revenue.

Ogden Resident said...


You may be right relative to my comment on the Standard. I will research.

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