St. Leon and Its Bond Documents.
For the past few years citizens in and around St. Leon are being forced to destroy their functioning septic systems. They are being forced to hookup to the St. Leon Sewer Works system wherever the sewer board has laid this low pressure sewer line given that one’s property line, not their home, is within 300 feet of the sewer line.
To finance the Sewer Works St. Leon issued industrial revenue bonds in the total amount of nearly 5 million dollars. The earlier bonds of 1996 bonds were described as not to exceed a 6% interest return to owner of the bonds.
Subsequently more bonds were issued to expand the sewer system.The interest paid to the owners of the bonds is exempt from the Federal Income Tax.
An industrial revenue bond pays interest and the cost of the eventual repurchase of the bond comes only from the income generated by the project for which the bonds were issued. Therefore the fees generated by hooking up to the sewer lines, and the monthly fees to receive the sewer service are the only permissible sources of revenue to pay for all of this. Additionally there are ongoing Sewer Works operating costs such as maintenance, repairs, replacement of outdated or worn out equipment, office costs, equipment and liability insurance costs and the fees paid to the company EES, which is the for profit operator of the St. Leon system. The town of St. Leon has no legal financial responsibility for this Sewer Works.The source of the revenue to pay for all of the above is the customer of the Sewer Works.
The Sewer Works, in order to protect the investment of the people who bought the Sewer Bonds which financed this project can adjust rates and charges to guarantee the bondholders the interest payments they receive plus a guarantee to repurchase the bonds from the owners of the bonds at very definite dates. This is clearly described in the Bond Document “Amended Ordinance Number 1996-7, page 12, section 16.
In the subsequent bond issue ordinance a clause was inserted into the document which has caused most of the trouble in regard to the people of St Leon and its surrounding area related to the St. Leon Sewer Works.
The following is a Direct quote from the Bond Document labeled exhibit A, Ordinance Number 2003-4, page 39 section ( g):
· “The town shall take all actions or proceedings necessary and proper to require connection of all property where liquid and solid waste, sewage, night soil, or industrial waste is produced with available sanitary sewers. The Town shall, insofar as possible cause all such sanitary sewers to be connected with said sewage works.”
There is it. Welcome to a possible sheriff’s sale of your property.
This begs the questions:
1. Who recommended this clause?
2. Who agreed to put it into the document?
3. Did anyone including the bond council explain to the signatories of the document the possible dire effects upon our neighbors?
4. Did the signatories of the document actually study the document and question this severe clause? Did they actually read it?
All the Sewer Works people, had to do thereafter is lay sewer lines, invoke the Indiana code of mandatory sewer hookups of property lines within 300 feet of the sewer line, and they had A MONEY MACHINE, far better than a printing press in the cellar.
The following is another direct quote from the 1996 Bond Document page 15 section (g):
“The provisions of this ordinance shall constitute a contract by and between the Town and the holders of the Bonds and after issuance of the said Bonds this Ordinance shall not be repealed or amended in any respect which in anyway adversely affects the rights of such holders so long as any of the Bonds or interest thereon remain unpaid”.
Thus all this talk about amending the law, modifying the law ad nauseum is outrageously foolish. IT CAN’T BE DONE!
These clauses are in the documents, they are public documents written in plain ordinary English. Anyone with a 6th grade education can easily read and understand these documents. Where were those who have sworn to look after the welfare of the citizens?
The only possible answer to this problem is to get the state to purchase the bonds and destroy them. The state has plenty of money as compared to a measly few million dollars of state money. Remember the State gave Honda in Greensburg 140 million dollars worth of tax breaks and 50 million dollars of cash.
Remember that Senator Nugent and the Governor , Mitch Daniels even persuaded Lawrenceburg to give, yes, give 10 million dollars of taxpayers’ money to the City of Greensburg. John Nugent together with the Governor ought to find this 5 million There is plenty of money around. No, I am not asking Lawrenceburg to pay off this debt, it should be done by the state.
The argument that other municipalities will go to the state to ask for help to relieve debt is not valid. We have an egregious set of Bond Documents that are destroying the right of our citizens to pursue a pleasant life out from under heavy handed government and/or its sycophants. People are suffering as they think of the consequences of these ordinances.
At the Commissioner meeting of February 19, 2008 we had to listen to a young mother and wife pleading on behalf of herself and on the behalf of others, some aged, to be able to live in peace in their homes without the specter of losing their homes. It was embarrassing to listen to this woman baring her financial woes, telling all of us that she can’t afford to do what the St. Leon sewer works demands from her in order for her to keep her home.
Here in the United State of America people can actually lose their homes because of these Ordinances?? Ordinances which perhaps no one studied? Yes they can!
This is indescribably shameful.
Alan S. Freemond, Sr.
Tanners Creek Farm