Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Real Slap in the Taxpayer Face

Eureka Passes Budget -- A Lemon

[UPDATE Below]

Is this how you encourage and support the people that pay taxes, local businesses, pride in where you live and justify all the taxes we pay, property taxes in particular? Read the latest sorry commentaries by the city council on this fiasco.

Why do we need the City Council when all they do is rubber-stamp some paid flunky's suggestions? How much money would we save there? Read: “The council passed the budget as city staff recommended it, which took into account a projected shortfall of $4.5 million, with a 3-2 vote.”

Notice why the two "no" votes: “Councilman Larry Glass and Councilwoman Linda Atkins dissented, stating they were unhappy with the more than $1.5 million in cuts made to the city's public safety departments.”

Councilman Larry Glass,
“...[T]he council could implement a priority-based approach to the budget now. With such deep cuts, “we're so short we don't know what to do,” but the public obviously wanted to refrain from cutting public safety.

”The city's primary function is to protect,” Glass said.” [Emphasis added]
Where's this Priority Protection for the elderly, local businesses, home and property owners?

Councilwoman Atikin's comment essentially reiterated the sentiment, “we don't know what to do.”

Over the past couple of weeks there's been a flurry of newspaper articles in the Times-Standard about the budget, the latest Sunday, July 18 was "On The Edge Of A Cliff" and Tuesday, July 20, "Changes ahead for city of Eureka"? - "Eureka Finance Advisory Committee suggest future budget changes." The "projected" deficit is $4.5 million. However, there is a reported "$1.7 million structural deficit in the budget that is not addressed this year."

The Sunday article concludes with these memorable words,

"During Thursday's meeting, Councilman Frank Jager said this year's difficult budget process should stress to voters the importance of the tax measure that will come before them in November."
This is what is always applied - Passive Coercion. The taxpaying people of this city need the services they've contracted and paid for with the City Government. Some of these services are an ever-present priority, like the police and fire departments. Not only that, but we need police and fire men and women working for the community in a good mood. We don't need them blaming us for shirking our mutual duties, obligations and responsibilities as citizens for making their job more impossible. Yet, that's the box our elected representatives ALWAYS put the taxpaying citizen. Strong-arm leverage! Works every time.

AND ... the Results – Wednesday, July 21, 2010, headline: “Eureka Passes Budget” - Cuts made to public safety, other city departments AND to the Senior's – Let The Old People Eat Cake! Already the Senior Recourse Center is cutting meals. What's next? Better to feed the animals at the zoo, I guess.

[UPDATE :: Wednesday, July 21, 2010]

Humboldt Herald has an interesting commentary on Frank Jager - "Jager and the EPD" . You know who he is? He said, "After 17 meetings, I'm not ready to start over again." Doing WHAT? The "staff" did all the work.

Recent Times-Standard articles dealing with budget crisis in Eureka:

'On the edge of a cliff': Eureka City Council to consider adopting lean budget Tuesday

Not talking about paper clips: Eureka police chief says proposed budget cuts will affect services

Eureka budget grinds forward; council meets in special session tonight

Eureka budget proposal presented to council; details to be discussed next week

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