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Old 02-17-2009, 02:07 PM
 
27,153 posts, read 22,593,850 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Milwaukee City View Post
neither!!! how are they ugly? personal perf I guess. Just don't put them next to the art museum and take down the orange sunburst already. I wish a drunk driver would hit it and demolish it so we wouldn't have look at suck ugly art. as long as he is okay.
They don't have to be next to an art museum. They can stand off from most buildings. I hope no one hits a turbine. My personal preference. I just feel like wind turbines(among other alternative energy sources) could help in the revival of Milwaukee's economy.
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Old 02-17-2009, 02:42 PM
 
Location: Lower East Side, Milwaukee, WI
2,950 posts, read 1,940,212 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 43north87west View Post
Interesting observation; you're totally right. A $400k home would carry around $2300 property taxes in my area in Phoenix. The schools in that area are actually pretty good. Plop that home onto somewhere on the East Side of Milwaukee, same price, same lot, similar size, rotten MPS school system, and the taxes are $9k. Shorewood? $10k plus.

I don't see where the $7500 difference is.
First of all, a house that costs $400,000 in Phoenix would only cost about $250,000 in Milwaukee. So your entire premise doesn't make sense. Our cost of living is much lower than it is in Arizona. A $400,000 home in Milwaukee would be equivalent to a $750,000 home in Phoenix. You get way more bang for your buck in Milwaukee, even if you pay higher property taxes.
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Old 02-17-2009, 02:44 PM
 
Location: Lower East Side, Milwaukee, WI
2,950 posts, read 1,940,212 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pirate_lafitte View Post
Not only that, give the people who live in Milwaukee incentives to start businesses. Milwaukee is next to Lake Michigan. Why not take advantage of that. Wind comes off of Lake Michigan. Wind turbines can be used to generate energy. The route to a more economically sound Milwaukee can start at home and then branch out. Give people from the outside incentives to move to MKE and give the people of MKE incentives to start their own businesses and create jobs.
Who the hell wants to waste valuable waterfront real estate by building horrendous looking wind mills alongside it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by pirate_lafitte View Post
They don't have to be next to an art museum. They can stand off from most buildings. I hope no one hits a turbine. My personal preference. I just feel like wind turbines(among other alternative energy sources) could help in the revival of Milwaukee's economy.
Milwaukee is a manufacturing town. I would like to see us building wind mills, I just don't want to see them along the lake shore.

Last edited by EastSideMKE; 02-17-2009 at 02:57 PM..
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Old 02-17-2009, 02:59 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jjacobeclark View Post
Who the hell wants to waste valuable waterfront real estate by building horrendous looking wind mills alongside it?

Milwaukee is a manufacturing town. I would like to see us building wind mills, I just don't want to see them along the lake shore.
Not all the windmills have to be built on the lakefront, but while we're at it, where can they be put at if not the lakeshore? I thought of the shore because that is the best chance of constant wind.

As for the windmills, they can be disguised as lighthouses.
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Old 02-17-2009, 03:53 PM
 
Location: Lower East Side, Milwaukee, WI
2,950 posts, read 1,940,212 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pirate_lafitte View Post
Not all the windmills have to be built on the lakefront, but while we're at it, where can they be put at if not the lakeshore? I thought of the shore because that is the best chance of constant wind.

As for the windmills, they can be disguised as lighthouses.
I'm going to assume you've never actually seen one of these wind mills in person. The blades alone are 100 feet in length and the bases are around 200-300 feet tall. It would be impossible to disguise them as lighthouses. A possibility would be to build them a mile or so out from land in the middle of the lake where nobody could see them. A similar thing has already been done in Martha's Vineyard.
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Old 02-17-2009, 04:03 PM
 
Location: Metro Milwaukee, WI
3,058 posts, read 8,154,652 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jjacobeclark View Post
First of all, a house that costs $400,000 in Phoenix would only cost about $250,000 in Milwaukee. So your entire premise doesn't make sense. Our cost of living is much lower than it is in Arizona. A $400,000 home in Milwaukee would be equivalent to a $750,000 home in Phoenix. You get way more bang for your buck in Milwaukee, even if you pay higher property taxes.
This is a fair point.
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Old 02-17-2009, 04:12 PM
 
Location: Portland OR
1,041 posts, read 1,418,677 times
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What about putting the windmills in the middle of the lake? Last time I flew into Amsterdam, I saw hundreds of the things off the coast in the Atlantic ocean. I thought that was pretty cool. No one sees them, so there can't be any NIMBY problem.
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Old 02-17-2009, 08:23 PM
 
Location: AZ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jjacobeclark View Post
First of all, a house that costs $400,000 in Phoenix would only cost about $250,000 in Milwaukee. So your entire premise doesn't make sense. Our cost of living is much lower than it is in Arizona. A $400,000 home in Milwaukee would be equivalent to a $750,000 home in Phoenix. You get way more bang for your buck in Milwaukee, even if you pay higher property taxes.
Actually, no, the premise that cost of living here is "higher", is only valid in certain areas, and when valid, is usually within 10%. I think you are comparing incomparable properties, using peak bubble (read: wrong) real estate valuation. And that isn't a valid comparison. I live in Phoenix most of the year, so I know what it costs.

Here is what you have to understand: The City of Phoenix is 500 square miles. That's a lot of space, and within it, a large variety of neighborhoods, both rich and poor. When you lok at cost of living, you have to look at ZIP codes, which are usually the most finite increments of measurement that identify an urban area's statistics. (i.e. while it would be nice to say "cost of living in Bay View", that's not an easy or accurate way to get data, since the definition of "Bay View" is not a statistical measurement point, while the ZIP code is.)

Obviously within 500 square miles, there are a variety of areas, and I allowed in the inner ring suburbs of Milwaukee when making my comparison, to make it a little more accurate. Phoenix has few suburbs despite its massive size, while Milwaukee has many, despite its small size.

When I compared our would-be "$400k" house, I actually went out in my neighborhood and found a couple, because I can easily do it and I feel that this discussion is important, given the Milwaukee County tax rate. The figure $350-400k is a price that will get you into my Phoenix area without a problem, in a very nice house. My area is very highly sought after, has a very high percentage of college graduates (plenty of initials DDS, MD, DO, etc), high average income, and a very good school system (contrary to most of Phoenix). For that reason, it's "almost" suburban in quality, but falls within the city borders and has some city qualities. Not too much different than Shorewood or the residential East Side. The crime is low, the neighborhood is beautiful, the natural scenery is beautiful (we have mountains instead of a lake), and it's clean. Our neighborhood is separated from high crime areas of Phoenix by a mountain, and is accessible only via the end of that mountain. The other side of the mountain is totally inaccessible and therefore this area ("the world's largest cul de sac") is quiet and undisturbed by thugs and thieves.

I also noticed that, according to this website, the cost of living index in my Phoenix neighborhood is a 98.1, which is exactly the same as my Milwaukee ZIP code, which I decided to use for comparison purposes. So, we have areas that have identical costs of living (according to the data at this website), similarly sized single family homes on similar sized lots, decent schools, high percentage of college grads, and high household incomes (higher in 53211).

Home prices, for a home of similar size, in both areas, is very similar. Understand that we can't make a perfect comparison, because one must factor in a number of things in home values. Also, there are differences between different cities that make certain things incomparable, such as cost to heat an in ground pool 12 months a year, different climate-based HVAC systems, age of the home, etc. Some things will be different in the north, than in the sunbelt, particularly in the desert.

Also, if you compare home prices, you should not compare later than 2006, 2005 would be preferable, to weed out the borderline criminal speculation taking place in this area during that time. That $700k house in Phoenix, that you say would be $400k in Milwaukee, is not $700k in Phoenix. It's $400k in some very nice Phoenix suburbs, since prices in 05-08 became radically inflated due to option ARM financing and reckless speculation. Moving into the farthest residential suburbs of Phoenix, one can find listings for a 3000+ sq. ft., virtually new home as low as $120k. That's not a lot of home, it's a hell of a lot of home for $120k. It's out a long way, but a super cheap home also buys a lot of commuting expense in exchange. Try finding this in Milwaukee, or anywhere in Southeastern WI.

But back to our $400k bake-off one more time. In my comparison, which was as "apples-to-apples" as I could make it demographically and financially, the $400k home here carries a property tax bill in the low to mid $2000s. Moving north to the 53211 zip code, our $400k property carries a bill from $9k, to well over ten thousand dollars. Again, this is a comparison between two areas with the same costs of living. Our $400k house (both areas) has a property tax bill that could be five hundred percent higher in Milwaukee.

So feel free to think anything that you want. But do not be misled by people attempting to justify the "value" of Milwaukee-area real estate and property tax, by blowing cost of living in other states out of proportion. I do not see the justification of 5x more taxes in Milwaukee, particularly since the value of comparable properties are only marginally higher in Phoenix, if at all. On top of that, while some things are more expensive, many others are less expensive. This is why I firmly believe that Wisconsin's tax structure is strangling businesses and people right out of the state. The property tax is totally disproportionate in Milwaukee.

Last edited by 43north87west; 02-17-2009 at 08:38 PM..
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Old 02-17-2009, 09:12 PM
 
Location: Bay View, Milwaukee
1,319 posts, read 2,468,746 times
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Has anyone actually looked at the comparative expenses of Phoenix city versus Milwaukee city to get a sense of where the extra thousands of property tax revenue go?

Does part of the difference have something to do with Milwaukee's inability to expand geographically (and grow its tax base through annexation), versus Phoenix's ability to annex land and tax base (and thereby pre-empt the typical creation of suburbs as found elsewhere)?

Is the property tax rate the same all over the city of Phoenix, or are there differential tax rates according to district or neighborhood? And how does "white flight" take shape in Phoenix? Do people simply relocate to another part of the city, or are suburbs starting to become more prominent?

From what I've read, the population of Phoenix city has been growing, as the population of Milwaukee city has been declining. Milwaukee has had to play with tax hikes and property assessments to garner revenue as people have left the city. Are the people moving into Phoenix in aggregate well-off? Or is the ratio of tax collected-to-residents getting thinner if poorer people make up the bulk of the city's new residents? Or perhaps a growing percentage of new residents are upper-income folks?

A lot of questions, but it just seems to me that the two cities are at different stages of demographic maturity. Surely, Milwaukee is at a comparative disadvantage, but I wonder if the trends in revenue-to-demographics in Phoenix are ultimately so promising, or if they show signs of trouble.
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Old 02-17-2009, 11:26 PM
 
Location: Lower East Side, Milwaukee, WI
2,950 posts, read 1,940,212 times
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I'm still going to have to disagree with you 43north87west. On a Cost of Living scale where 100 is average, Milwaukee scores 83 while Phoenix comes in at 104 according to Sperling's Best Places. I just moved to Milwaukee in January after living the last 5 years in Denver, who by the way comes in at 105 on that same scale. I can tell you from my experience there that houses selling for $700,000-$800,000 would only sell for $200,000-$300,000 here in Milwaukee and even less in Appleton. I was blown away by how much money people would shell out for houses that bordered on being dumpy. A 2 bedroom shotgun house in Denver's Five Points neighborhood would sell for over $250,000. A house like that in Wisconsin would fetch less than $100,000, unless it was on a lake of course. Real estate is pretty dirt cheap here in Wisconsin, especially compared to the West.
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