Source: The Corydon Democrat

January 31, 2014 | 09:45 AM

The only portion of the Community Fund that is allowed to be spent is a portion of the "interest" income from it, ie the money that is generated each year from it being invested. The idea being that as this fund grows, it will provide a stable future source of revenue to the county without having to raise taxes.

That is exactly what the Council is currently using it for.

It is a fact that several times, to build the new government center and to finance the hospital, past councils have diverted money intended for the Community Fund into other projects. Regardless of whether you think those were good allocations of money or not, it is a fact that money was diverted before it ever got into the Community Fund to pay for those projects. The whole purpose of restricting the fund so that only the investment return could be spent was to avoid having the principle spent in such a way.

You can deal with the General Fund shortfall through:

1) raising taxes,
2) deep cuts in county services,
3) budgeting with riverboat dollars,
or 4) investment returns from the Community Fund.

Nobody wants 1 or 2.

3 is how it has often been done in the past, but that way leaves the county vulnerable if the boat money is ever lost.

4 is the only long-term solution, along with growing the county's tax base through economic development, which the county has also been working a lot on in recent years.

Of course, it's much easier for politicians to point fingers at each other than deal with the reality of the situation, which is that the county has lived well beyond its means for a very long time.