In August 1938 voters in New Vienna went to the polls to vote for or against a new municipal building. Here's the pamphlet urging voters to vote AGAINST the bond issue. Transcription follows.
ABOUT THE BOND ISSUE
At the present time there exists in our village considerable agitation sponsored by a minority group for the placing of a bonded indebtedness against our village in the amount of $17,000 which means the mortgaging of our homes for the next 17 years, for many of us the balance of our lives. This money is to be spent for the construction of a municipal building. Now the questions is are you willing to mortgage your homes for the balance of your lives for the construction of a building, or anything else nonessential and of no value to our town save and except to stand as a monument to the sponsors thereof.
We have a building that is adequate for all the needs of the village. It contains rooms for council meetings, storage for fire equipment and a jail. What else do we need? The sponsors say we need a room for a picture show. Who needs such a room? Has our town constructed any buildings for the conducting of any other line of business in our town? The picture business is the same as any other line of business. It is a business for someone to conduct to gain something for himself. Our town won't gain anything from its operation. Where is there a town in the state of Ohio the size of New Vienna that has spent $31,000 for the sole purpose of housing a picture show?
There are things that our town needs and thins that are essential. For instance we have a city water system that is badly in need or repair and new equipment, in order to give us a sufficient supply of pure and wholesome water. This we must have and the time is at hand when we must spend several thousand dollars for the repairing of and equipment for our municipal water plant.
The sponsors say this bond issue will not raise your taxes. How untrue this must be, when we know it means an additional expense to our village of approximate $1,600 per year and this must be assessed against your homes. The statements herein made are facts. Now how can any man or woman vote such indebtedness against the home owners of New Vienna for the construction of a building that is not essential for either the moral or material upbuilding of our community? This huge sum of money wold raise our taxes almost to the limit of our ability to raise money by taxation as the law places a limit upon the voting of bonded indebtedness of municipalities. Now if we vote for the issuance of the $17,000 debt against our town how are we going to raise the money for things our village must have?
The sponsors of this project are mostly men of wealth, men who care little for the extra taxes they must pay. They also care little for poor men or men of moderate means, who are trying to provide themselves with a modest home, or the renter who is toiling every day to pay his rent and provide himself and his family with the necessities of life.
A vote against this big bond issue is a vote to save our village from a hopeless debt, preserve our municipal water plant and our street lights.
On Tuesday night of this week a man from Cincinnati made a speech in New Vienna telling you how you should vote on this bond issue. What interest has this man in the welfare of our village? I would say none, but he does have a selfish interest in the promotion of this project. Should the people of this town approve the bond issue, this man already has a signed contract wherein he is to get $1,800 of our hard earned money and he will do very little work to earn it.
Vote AGAINST the Bond Issue
[Issued by] The Citizens Committee, James R. West, Chairman