• VOTE NO on this 22 million dollar bond issue. Let all these area plants hire and train their own employees. Most of these plants at one time had apprenticeship programs and in my opinion it worked quiet well.

    April 30, 2012 at 4 p.m.
  • I can only imagine the quality of worker they'll find for $10.50 an hour.

    good luck staffing that place if they give any type of drug test

    April 29, 2012 at 10:15 p.m.
  • I would think CAT would be willing to pay a premium for all these well trained employees. If $10.50 an hour is a premium thats news to me. Benfits (Insurance / 401K / Retirement) are wonderful things that when factored in create a much better job than the $10.50 an hour job represents. Certainly much better than Taco Bell can provide. At Taco Bell I doubt a person is in a very dangerous environment and there is probably little if any risk of serious injury.
    I'm guessing a $10.50 and hour job equates to what... $20,000 -$25,000 a year. Does that sound about right???

    I think Caterpillar coming to Victoria is an OK thing. There are many businesses that will do see an increase in their day to day business but the vast majority of Victoria's citizens aren't going to benefit all that much. Caterpillars package for building here was very very good for Caterpillar. So far the only benefit I've seen from them coming here is a new traffic light on the loop. Not much of a benefit in my mind. We will all know a lot more in 10 years when Caterpillars tax abatement is renewed for another term or they start paying like the rest of us.

    But the story here is VC's bond for a measley 22 million, right? Is VC a business trying to sustain itself or is it the life blood keeping this city alive. Based on it's continual need for citizens to supply it with cash, I don't think it is either of those.

    Does anyone try to make do with what they have anymore or is it becoming an increasingly common practice to just tell everyone how much better you are going to make their life and then ask for another tiny part of their paycheck?

    April 29, 2012 at 8:47 p.m.
  • Here is a example of why I don't want to fund the bond. Recently the college determined their auditorium was needing $500,000 in repairs. It was determined the college no longer needed the auditorium because VISD (with taxpayer money) build a new one. The college building was estimated to be worth 7 million dollars. So the college spends 2 million dollars to tear down a 7 million dollar building to save half a million dollars in repairs. Do the math. Now the college is wanting to buy the Welder Center because they say they need a fine arts auditorium. We are always being told "oh it is only $30 per year". We are told that by the city, county, college, and any other taxing authority. Have you noticed your license plates went up? It goes on and on. For those of us who pay these increases, who can we tax to get the money? Can we go to our employers and tell them we are giving ourselves a raise? Can we call the city and tell them we are reducing our water bill payments by $5 per month? Hey, it is only $5 per month. They can afford that, right? Yes, it would be nice to have the technology center, but find some other way to pay for it. If it is so great, it should pay for itself, right?

    April 29, 2012 at 8:45 p.m.
  • CAT is paying $10.50/hour for most of those jobs. Some might jump the $13.00/hour mark. They do include medical benefits right away and a retirement matching program at least $1.00/$1.00 the employee puts in the system. I believe it is 6% of their paycheck they have to put towards that system. As far as the other stuff goes, I am surprised that CAT did not offer to pay for some sort of facility, but maybe that was negotiated away when CAT came here originally two years ago. I think the city can answer that question.

    April 29, 2012 at 5:21 p.m.
  • Vote yes, and your taxes go up!

    April 29, 2012 at 4:32 p.m.
  • $20 an hour up north ain't buying much. Typically their cost of living is higher than ours is down here. I hear the hourly pay at Cat isn't that great but the benefits are. And, if you don't have a job, wouldn't $9/hr beat the nothing you are currently making?

    April 29, 2012 at 4:26 p.m.
  • union jobs up north pay much more than $20/hr, from my experience

    guys up there can make a good living and afford a house, savings & retirement, novel concept for some of the companies around here

    April 29, 2012 at 3:55 p.m.
  • So what your saying is that just because the workers down here are not covered by a union, their labors are not worth as much as those that are? I am in no way a fan of unions, however I will NOT accept that my labors, or anyone else's for that fact, are only worth $10/hr when people up north are getting $20/hr. And as far as the workers being "limited skilled," wont the education at VC take care of that problem, thereby making them "skilled" workers? Is that not what this bond request is for? If they are only going to pay meager wages, let the company foot the bill for the training of their workforce. I, for one, am tired of paying for this type of stuff and having absolutely no return on investment for me.

    April 29, 2012 at 3:37 p.m.
  • Am I the only person who is getting tired of seeing this kind of statement in the Victoria Advocate, "The owner of a $100,000 home would pay about $30 more per year in property taxes, should the bond pass".
    It always seems to be followed by something like this, "would be beneficial to every citizen in the community". Oh really!
    Well, I've been waiting a long while for some benefit but cannot recall seeing it. Yes Laurent and Sam Houston have been fixed. But they were bad for at least 20 years before they were fixed. Was all that work free to the citizens or did some other bond to the college result in the great roads?

    Good Grief, Does it ever end!!!

    Someone else mentioned the purchase of the Welder Center so the citizens can have another benefit. Paying fo that money pit forever and ever.

    I may be being slightly negative here but I'm just looking foe one of two things, the benefits we are supposed to be getting from all of this or the end of seeing "it will only increase your taxes by X amount". Sorry, I can't handle any more benefits.

    BTW, romuor has it the large majority of the jobs at Caterpillar will be $8.00 and $9.00 per hour jobs. Is there really any truth to that. If this is true, is that really a benefit to our community?

    April 29, 2012 at 2:53 p.m.
  • And further... I would guess that those $20/hr jobs are union jobs and would love to hear your explanation why it makes sense to pay an entry level, limited skills employee $20/hr. I would suggest that Cat isn't under paying locally, but rather overpaying in union states.

    April 29, 2012 at 2:40 p.m.
  • BRKT99,

    Just out of curiosity, why is it bad for a company to build a new manufacturing plant, invent hundreds of millions of dollars in this community and add almost 1,000 new jobs to the economy? If it's such a bad deal, people won't take the Cat jobs and will opt for Taco Bell instead, but since they've been hiring like mad, I would think that most people agree that Cat offers a great employment package.

    April 29, 2012 at 2:39 p.m.
  • Ya, Catapillar put us on the map all right. By building a huge assembly plant in a place where they can get cheap labor. Those assembly jobs pay almost $20/ hr up north, but here they are barely paying half that. So how does it make sense to go to college and put yourself in debt to prepare for a career that has about as much earning potential as working at taco bell?

    April 29, 2012 at 2:17 p.m.
  • With so many eyes in the industrial world looking at Victoria right now (thank you Cat, for putting us on the map!) I don't think that you can argue the benefits of having a facility like this in our community; however, whatever happened to capital campaigns and support from the industries that will benefit most by it. Seems to me that a bond is a quick and easy fix but not the most fiscally responsible approach.

    April 29, 2012 at 1:16 p.m.
  • The college charges all these corporations for training. Shouldn't that be used to pay for the facilities?

    April 29, 2012 at 10:33 a.m.
  • HookEm1...Thank you for a well written and well thought out essay about why the bond issue should be voted down. The school will attempt to guilt the voters into approving this twenty-two million dollar debt (they call it a bond) in the name of improving educational opportunities in the region. Your post explains quite clearly why they should be denied.

    April 29, 2012 at 10:23 a.m.
  • Again, taxpayers are asked to support the growth of a government subsidized institution. At least we have a vote on this one. Last year the Victoria College board raised the taxes on Victoria county residents, without a vote, so they could give pay raises to their employees. How would you, the taxpayers, like a raise?

    Victoria College will not be on the hook to pay this money back. You, the taxpayers will be on the hook. We have 14 more years to pay on the last 15.5 million bond issue from 2006. Now they want another 22 million in debt added on top of this, which the taxpayers of the county will have to pay back.

    This institution is in business to perpetuate itself, pure and simple. They have three sources of funds. One is money they receive from the state of Texas, which is, indirectly, tax money paid by you that is going to be less and less every year as the state fights its budget problems. Two, is direct taxes it imposes on the residents of Victoria County, which will likely increase as they did last year. Three, is continually increasing tuition to its students which means ever increasing debt to them by way of student loans. Is it smart money management to pile more debt on top of existing debt? I suppose it could be considered smart … when somebody else is on the hook to pay the debt off!

    I hope all readers are aware of how the talk about VC taking over the Welder Center has died down recently. Rest assured that as soon as this bond election is over, that talk will be revived and VC will be going strong to acquire this building that has a proven track record of losing money. The county resident will then be committed to the maintenance of this property, as well.

    Does VC care about the way it spends your tax money? See for yourself. Before you go to vote on this issue which will further raise your taxes and your indebtedness, I invite you to drive by Red River & Ben Jordan. Look out the window and see the 10 foot tall, marble/stone/brick monoliths by the curb. These do nothing but number the parking lots. Give me a break! Could any of you figure a more economical way to accomplish the same thing? This is your tax money; this is your student loans being spent by the people in charge at Victoria College.

    This is one reader and one voter that will be against continuing this waste and against this bond issue.

    April 29, 2012 at 9:47 a.m.
  • Way to disguise an editorial as a story. Barely a mention from opponents and then they get a comment from someone who won't directly pay the tax increase because he's a senior. Why not talk to someone like me who has seen taxes increase dramatically in the past few years and am sick of it. I have a small tract of land in the county that is just dirt, grass and brush and the taxes on that have increase $2,000 in the past 3 years. Why? Nothing has changed on my land or that around it.

    April 29, 2012 at 9:32 a.m.
  • "Victoria College's $22 bond proposal explained" says the headline. Thanks again, VA, for the chuckles.

    April 29, 2012 at 12:40 a.m.