Blair Oaks: County Tax Fix Lacks Details

8 years 8 months 3 weeks ago Tuesday, November 30 2010 Nov 30, 2010 Tuesday, November 30, 2010 8:38:48 AM CST November 30, 2010 in News
WARDSVILLE - Blair Oaks School District officials said Monday the details are not in place for them to sign off on an agreement to end a dispute over tax revenues Cole County sent the district in error.

The split between the district and Cole County on how to handle the issue threatens to send at least three county government entities — the district, the county, and Jefferson City — to court, as Jefferson City has said it would file a lawsuit if all parties had not signed the agreement by Tuesday at 5 p.m.

The dispute stems from a mistake in the Cole County Collector's office made nearly 20 years ago that slowly diverted roughly $4.5 million in revenues from a county surtax on commercial property toward some government entities and away from others.

Jefferson City says it lost out on more than $3.5 million in tax revenues because of the miscalculation. The city council unanimously agreed on November 15 to the settlement drawn up by the county which repays the city more than $751,000, the maximum the city could recoup under the three-year statute of limitations.

The county overpaid the Blair Oaks School District more than $665,000.  It agrees in principle that it should pay that money back, but refuses to sign off on the agreement because the amount it would have to repay over a 23-year period — $656,000 — has not been certified by a third-party audit.

Blair Oaks superintendent Jim Jones said district officials were the only county government entity to raise questions about the county's math, asking in writing whether the surtax revenue numbers were correct in 2007, 2008, and 2009. Each year, Blair Oaks school board president Greg Russell said county officials told the district the figures were correct.

"We believe that was arrogant," Russell said, "that it should have been dealt with at the time when it was repeatedly brought to their attention, and now we're faced with the situation that we now have."

According to documents from the Blair Oaks schools, the county overpaid itself by more than $1.2 million between county disability funds, a road and bridge fund, and county government itself. Under the agreement, the county would pay back about $15,000.

Without a finalized agreement, Jefferson City's attorney Nathan Nicklaus said the city will file a lawsuit to make sure the city can get back all of the funds the county owes it under the legal statute of limitations.  If the lawsuit's filed, the entire agreement over how to handle the miscalculation would likely fall apart.

"I'm not afraid of going to court," Cole County presiding commissioner Marc Ellinger said. "It doesn't bother me. I'd just as soon resolve this dispute amicably. But that ball's not in my court."

Specifically, Ellinger believes the ball is in Blair Oaks School District's "court."  He says the deal is a result of four months of negotiations and is not about to be changed at this point.

"At this late date, we've got a done deal," Ellinger said. "At the last minute, you don't add new terms to a done deal."

Blair Oaks superintendent Jim Jones says that nobody involved wants the dispute to end up in front of a judge, but he also wants an agreement "everyone can stand by" in the future.

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA- People in Boone and Callaway Counties have been receiving calls from people saying they need to pay money for... More >>
17 minutes ago Friday, August 23 2019 Aug 23, 2019 Friday, August 23, 2019 2:31:00 PM CDT August 23, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - A tweet with video showing what appears to someone throwing something at a downtown church prompted police to... More >>
30 minutes ago Friday, August 23 2019 Aug 23, 2019 Friday, August 23, 2019 2:18:00 PM CDT August 23, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri’s top election official is firing back after abortion-rights advocates sued him for allegedly impeding... More >>
4 hours ago Friday, August 23 2019 Aug 23, 2019 Friday, August 23, 2019 10:47:00 AM CDT August 23, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The Cole County Prosecutor's Office added new charges to the case of a man accused of stabbing... More >>
6 hours ago Friday, August 23 2019 Aug 23, 2019 Friday, August 23, 2019 7:49:00 AM CDT August 23, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Animal control officers, helped by Columbia police, removed dozens of animals from a home on August 21. ... More >>
7 hours ago Friday, August 23 2019 Aug 23, 2019 Friday, August 23, 2019 7:06:00 AM CDT August 23, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Pride is coming to Rose Music Hall Saturday. The free event kicks off at 1 p.m. with... More >>
10 hours ago Friday, August 23 2019 Aug 23, 2019 Friday, August 23, 2019 4:30:00 AM CDT August 23, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA — The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services is encouraging at-risk people to get vaccinated for hepatitis A... More >>
17 hours ago Thursday, August 22 2019 Aug 22, 2019 Thursday, August 22, 2019 9:20:00 PM CDT August 22, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Three months ago today, Jefferson City was hit by a tornado that ran from 54 Highway and... More >>
20 hours ago Thursday, August 22 2019 Aug 22, 2019 Thursday, August 22, 2019 6:46:00 PM CDT August 22, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - An incident at a Columbia Walmart Thursday afternoon that left shoppers fearing an active threat turned out to... More >>
20 hours ago Thursday, August 22 2019 Aug 22, 2019 Thursday, August 22, 2019 6:05:00 PM CDT August 22, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA (AP) — Abortion-rights advocates on Thursday sued Missouri's top election official, alleging his actions and state laws denied them... More >>
22 hours ago Thursday, August 22 2019 Aug 22, 2019 Thursday, August 22, 2019 4:02:00 PM CDT August 22, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - MU is offering grief counseling to any student, faculty or staff member after a student died on Wednesday.... More >>
23 hours ago Thursday, August 22 2019 Aug 22, 2019 Thursday, August 22, 2019 3:31:00 PM CDT August 22, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Missouri and several other states across the country are combating a shortage of veterinarians who are qualified to... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, August 22 2019 Aug 22, 2019 Thursday, August 22, 2019 2:30:00 PM CDT August 22, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - After 10 years of MU enrollment hitting historic highs to major drops, downtown businesses have learned to adapt.... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, August 22 2019 Aug 22, 2019 Thursday, August 22, 2019 1:41:00 PM CDT August 22, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Prosecutors filed a charge of making a terrorist threat against a man police arrested for his social... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, August 22 2019 Aug 22, 2019 Thursday, August 22, 2019 11:43:00 AM CDT August 22, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - A former teacher who worked at the school districts in Fulton and Ashland pleaded guilty in a child... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, August 22 2019 Aug 22, 2019 Thursday, August 22, 2019 8:14:00 AM CDT August 22, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The MU Police Department responded to a call at around 4 p.m. Wednesday about an unresponsive male... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, August 21 2019 Aug 21, 2019 Wednesday, August 21, 2019 11:05:00 PM CDT August 21, 2019 in News
MORGAN COUNTY - A motorcycle pursuit has Morgan County deputies and Eldon Police looking for a subject. The pursuit... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, August 21 2019 Aug 21, 2019 Wednesday, August 21, 2019 9:57:00 PM CDT August 21, 2019 in News
OSAGE BEACH - An outside education service vendor used by multiple school districts across the state announced it had a... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, August 21 2019 Aug 21, 2019 Wednesday, August 21, 2019 8:51:00 PM CDT August 21, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 84°
3pm 79°
4pm 79°
5pm 81°
6pm 80°