Quarter billion dollar figure does not include retirement funds
COLUMBIA, Mo 8/3/15 (Beat Byte) -- As Columbia residents go to the polls tomorrow to vote for -- or against -- yet another city tax, we wanted to dispute -- in big, bold, line-item relief -- assertions city officials keep making about how little cash (aka "liquidity") city government has on hand.
As of 9/30/14 -- the most recent date reported -- that figure was $246,778,093, NOT including another $111,984,534 in cash and liquid investments to pay city retirees.
City Hall is too broke "write a check" for $6.75 million in sewer repairs downtown, Mayor Bob McDavid said last year.
Hizzoner followed those comments with repeated, public attacks on this publication for "misleading" reports about this issue. He clearly hasn't read -- let alone comprehended -- the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR), from which these figures come.
This roughly $250 million cash stash, as we've called it, sits in nearly 200 numbered bank accounts -- money markets, CDs, Treasuries, and other so-called "liquid" investments itemized, one by one, below.
These accounts represent an astonishing 56% of the city's $442 million annual budget, which is like saying a person who earns and spends $20,000 a year has $11,200 in savings they don't use for emergencies. Or that a person who makes and spends $100,000 annually has $56,000 in savings they rarely tap.
This giant cash stash just keeps growing. It was $229 million in 2010; as high as $267 million in 2012. With all that money on deposit, it's no wonder every bank in town is behind every tax increase.
That ought to sound strange -- bankers are normally portrayed as low-tax Republican types. But all that party rhetoric goes out the window when big bucks are at stake.
Scroll through these accounts, and so your eyes don't glaze over, think economically about them. Just one of these babies could set a person up for life.
Think philosophically. We're pissing and moaning about income inequality, and yet: Look at this. Our own city government, amassing this kind of dough.
Think morally. Think ethically. How much money does City Hall spend on the public's priorities? Chip-and-seal streets. Bad sewers and storm drains. A homeless population left to "drop in" centers. And a rapidly rising cost of doing business -- and cost of living -- for everybody else.
Every year, city manager Mike Matthes seeks and gets dozens and dozens of fee, fine, and rate increases in his annual budget. And every year, without fail, the city asks us voters for more money, either at the polls or through our elected Council.
Now, they've got a big PAC called "Foundation for Columbia's Future" to do the dirty work, which includes taking thousands of dollars from businesses seeking city jobs, like the $5,000 donation to the tax push from a firetruck supplier.
Columbia isn't going to have a future if this annual cycle of take from the little people and give to the big people -- the "right people," as Trib publisher Hank Waters calls them -- doesn't stop.
City Hall bank account / $ Amount as of 9/30/14
3133XAWF0 $136,6223133XCQE6 $97,4713133XCT60 $158,50631294KCL7 $19,40631294KDD4 $42,99331344XNTO $67,11631392PZL2 $12,58831335HGU1 $11,1323128PKZW7 $135,93031371N4M4 $187,78331403SY42 $170,74731335HJG9 $9,892317705AP6 $2,237,63831407B6E4 $118,508312904RL1 $8,50131336WAM1 $260,2163128M1BN8 $185,2663128PUVG4 $1,333,1733128MBHR1 $673,39831371KBN0 $15,848312906C40 $5,109312906XG0 $19,03331331XX64 $2,449,91031397F2N1 $298,0663128PFH24 $96,4323129072D9 $7,9483134G45T1 $1,921,94031358KF37 $5,999312909J88 $89,5873136A9ZB7 $1,993,013313381H40 $1,888,900313382UX9 $1,967,56031371K7J4 $276,75231335H2U6 $224,81031371LK32 $221,09836241K3L0 $821,30731410K3V4 $366,03431371LQY8 $195,6933130A1RQ3 $1,966,5803128MMK28 $576,47531335H5D1 $730,2393128PQMT5 $367,88231398V7F7 $890,2473128MCWM3 $885,1503136AJRQ1 $1,975,16531410LB84 $1,032,82731397UZT9 $415,8723137A9FB7 $640,1393137B34Q8 $1,899,4073128PWEA2 $1,530,7893133T7WD7 $147,8713128CUKU9 $266,1063136A5YY6 $1,469,70531371NEY7 $320,1673136G0TA9 $2,932,5603136G0TS0 $1,973,6263137ATKU5 $1,599,4843137AVYK7 $1,605,4703128E4KJ0 $155,0903136G1CR8 $1,948,4803128P7JH7 $252,61131371NTK1 $154,9343136ACA27 $2,146,8843136G1HH5 $1,476,0303128P7JL8 $150,542313382TD5 $1,854,8203136G1MC0 $1,990,3003133832P5 $1,881,9003136AD2P3 $1,326,62236202C4S9 $4,26131398AQY1 $2,011,8003137A9RZ1 $1,405,2013128P7M67 $722,0433136AHNW6 $1,792,57131417Y4A2 $1,250,70931417Y6Q5 $1,177,71931417Y6X0 $914,83531394GBQ5 $717,87731392JVZ9 $735,9963137AXUG6 $2,597,91738374BG80 $307,4593137BAYE6 $1,984,67331393A5B9 $236,60731393BM77 $767,28431336SUH9 $162,65231395HMH0 $212,492313383R52 $2,045,82031402YS88 $56,52231292HZL1 $689,40031368HL35 $397,1473137A45W3 $2,344,86331402CU75 $541,12831404TAR4 $229,62731404QTX7 $102,63831404UQ52 $234,71538374JYF7 $132,59631395J5C6 $471,07731395TLX0 $278,97531395TM35 $121,3653128JM7H4 $319,67631395PHQ8 $339,11231394DHY9 $306,54731397FP48 $161,52231397G6P0 $5,4633863579F52 $119,70438376KAL5 $349,8703128LXQD5 $453,44631397LLU1 $720,38131410FVY8 $266,99031397EXX8 $153,3373128M4V42 $389,34131410GKU6 $137,60538378CQF7 $1,534,1393128M6YJ1 $680,03931349UTU2 $210,28731349UTV0 $76,96131397TJ37 $437,63738375YEK4 $214,33938376KLZ2 $572,53631398SMH3 $1,244,6193137A5ZA5 $1,169,01136202E5W5 $240,22038377JD83 $1,781,13831396QMC0 $423,94231398FKY6 $723,13831398FLA7 $511,50438378BQA0 $1,728,90838375D3D8 $543,26538376XZC0 $2,774,42038376T2H4 $609,90438378DPL3 $1,337,5013137A3ME6 $2,075,11138376KKX8 $322,00431397SGM0 $859,32638377JZ48 $1,320,33331398RC94 $745,4963137AMBU0 $1,099,2833136A9LG1 $1,394,61638375GQW4 $1,626,0483136AAEK7 $1,415,7583137A8LS5 $1,287,74531398TZJ3 $459,8923136AJPG5 $1,622,10031398NJE5 $1,021,4063137AU7H6 $1,647,69238376LZB8 $995,82738377LT57 $4,723,40631398N7B4 $1,596,92731398SQY2 $621,5983137A6AM4 $790,0473137A6R46 $492,2113136AADT9 $2,466,4553137ANME2 $525,86838377X4E9 $1,684,6023136A2V59 $1,904,5603137ANQF5 $1,040,8813137ATW57 $2,042,6893137AQJB5 $1,956,8873137ATGB2 $1,587,5813136A3XT3 $1,031,9433137AUCV9 $2,857,4783137AUVJ5 $1,567,5943136A8YZ7 $1,587,6083137AUF46 $1,519,9793136A4QK8 $2,302,0653136A6B45 $1,401,9353136A9GM4 $2,428,39538375GYE5 $1,567,40538378ESK0 $1,036,5313136A4JR1 $793,5123137ANNS0 $1,527,0273136A8ZW3 $1,965,3323136ACH53 $1,961,8093137ASAG9 $1,970,22038378JQU9 $1,760,5573136A9UY2 $1,643,5913136ABB28 $2,494,20738378GX78 $2,209,0113136AB5T6 $2,538,7113137B0LN2 $2,310,40438378FR51 $2,406,3993136ACYK1 $2,494,9613137AXUZ4 $1,536,3363137B2LG3 $1,812,5283136ABFP3 $1,319,3073136AKUZ4 $2,024,6003136ADKY4 $1,960,459
UBS Select $54,941,470
Total Pooled Cash and Marketable Securities...........$246,778,093
(DOES NOT INCLUDE retirement funds of $111,984,534).
Source: Table 13, 2014 CAFR