Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Little Opposition to Rez User Fee

This morning, Brian Broom with the Clarion Ledger, published an article concerning the proposed Reservoir Users Fee.  The brunt of the article is a preference of local lawmakers to exempt present PRVWSD leaseholders from the user fee.  If you are following this issue, I encourage you to read the full article (which can be found here).  Interesting snippets below.

While folks may come from far and wide to enjoy what is one of the most heavily used lakes in Mississippi, [Rep. Mark] Baker said the brunt of providing revenue to maintain the lake has almost solely fallen on reservoir residential leaseholders and the annual fees they pay.

"You're going to hoist this on the leaseholders to maintain the facilities for others," Baker said. "I want to take the yoke off leaseholders and spread the burden around."

"I think [leaseholders] should have an exemption for one boat per household," [Sen. Josh] Harkins said. "I think they've been footing the bill all this time and to hit them with another $35 is a little excessive."

State Rep. Brent Powell, R-Brandon, said it's less about money and more about principle. "I think the main issue with those against it is not the $35," Powell said. "I think it's just the sentiment of, 'Hey, we've been paying this forever. Why do I have to pay again?' "

The three lawmakers feel the leaseholders deserve an exemption, but there is little to indicate a groundswell of support for the idea — not even among the leaseholders.

According to reservoir general manager John Sigman, between 30 and 40 have written comments objecting to the fee. In contrast, Sigman said there are more than 5,500 residential leaseholders.

The comment period on the reservoir user fee will continue through May 15. Those wishing to comment can do so at comments@therez.ms.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

The reason Mr. Sigman is not getting many comments on this is that he has tried to claim that it's illegal to exempt the leaseholders. Sent a mailer to everyone claiming so. Couple that with the experiences the leaseholders have seen from PRVWSD that show they just do what they want regardless, and you've created the perfect atmosphere for apathy. The leaseholders aren't complaining because they have learned it will do zero good, and without elected representation, the board won't have to worry about repercussions.

Anonymous said...

I agree with the May 13 the comment above. As a leaseholder, I have serious concerns, as we are governed by a board that can rule and reign over us as they please. None are elected, but, rather, appointed, and they have no consideration for how everything to do with the Rez is paid for by us leaseholders, everything from administration to law enforcement, maintenance of the lake, parks and landings, operation of the spillway, picking up the litter, and on and on. Yet when they pass a new dictate, we are regarded as the folks who have used all of the offerings in the area for free for 50 years. We cannot even be appreciated by an exemption from the add-on fees that are being created to enhance the income of PRV. It is well past time for the freeloaders have to start paying. Even at State lakes, there is usually some kind of user fee, and they are State supported, while the reservoir is not State funded, but is funded by us leaseholders. Come on PRV board!

Anonymous said...

On the other hand, the rest of us paid foe the land and construction of the view you enjoy and lower acquisition cost to leaseholders, as opposed to paying the original true value of the lots. Who uses and enjoys the Rez each and every day? Yes, living on the Rez, like living on the beach, cost more, but you knew that. Just pay the fee and move on.

Anonymous said...

I also agree with 11:26 am and 6:37am.

I don't agree with this comment: "According to reservoir general manager John Sigman, between 30 and 40 have written comments objecting to the fee. In contrast, Sigman said there are more than 5,500 residential leaseholders."

There might be 5,500+ Leaseholders but the majority are not on the water nor do they have boats. Why would they care to comment about the fee if they will never have to pay it?

Anonymous said...

As a former leaseholder I agree with 9:31. You knew the deal when you signed the lease and you get to enjoy the lifestyle of living by the water. If there's going to be a boating tax then it should apply equally to all boat owners.

I also agree with the comments regarding the poor representation on the Board, but that's really another issue.