IT'S ALL OUT THERE NOW
Well, that was fun!!!
Hope everyone feels better after blowing off a little frustration.
We wanted to let the last posting ride for a while and see how folks responded after the spectacles at the Council meeting Monday night.
We never expected the thread to take the turn it took, but we feel we learned a lot from it. The lines have indeed been drawn in the sand.
It's a damn shame, but the fact of the matter is that the city's problems are so severe that citizens are blaming other citizens rather than holding the proper officials accountable for bad management.
It's clear that there is virtually no respect for people's differing opinions about what is best for the City, and this leads to the propensity for personal insults.
We would like to remind folks that the issues that must be dealt with pertaining to the City's current well-being, and future potential, have absolutely no bearing on the personal character of individuals.
Now, everyone put the potty-mouths away, and let’s get back to the business of dealing with the real issues, O.K.?!
We want to direct your attention to Ben Hershberg’s excellent article in Wednesday’s Courier-Journal regarding the situation we are facing with the Sewage Department - click here
“Fifer discussed sewage system finances at the council meeting Monday night, explaining why a controversial rate increase -- projected at 26 percent to 32 percent -- is needed four years after a 49 percent increase was enacted to help finance an expansion.” Folks, thatequivalentivilent of an 80% increase.
"…he said the system technically is in default on the requirements of the $40 million bond issue used to expand the system -- a project completed in March 2005.” Read This One Again!!!
“The sewer system is required to generate enough cash annually to pay operating expenses and make more than $5 million worth of bond payments -- plus an extra 25 percent for security, Fifer told the council.”
The bond payments were appropriated by Council from EDIT funds.
"A recent projection by the city's financial consultants said the sewer system is $2.5 million to $3 million short of what's needed.”
There is more than $1 million in appropriated funds that are missing.
We must admit, we are confounded that anyone could seriously put forth a compelling argument for swimming pools when we are facing such dire conditions in an absolutely vital component of our infrastructure.
Even more so, we are curious as to why the administration seems to think they do not have to produce true and accurate financial details of the 38 some-odd checking accounts that the Sewer Fund uses.
We stand commited to insisting upon a full investigative audit into the financials as recommended by the State. We will NOT accept a rate increase without such, even if it means we must go down the same road that 20 other citizens recently traveled.
We also feel compelled to remark on the inaccurate and incomplete coverage of the Council session by the Tribune in Tuesday’s edition of the paper (“…instead of the $6.25 per meeting Mayor James Garner’s administration had suggested.”???). Make that $625.00, which is the current pay for members of the Sewer Board. Our records show Garner was asking more for the Stormwater Board members ($700 per meeting), and himself as Chair ($1700 per meeting).
We’ll come back to the particular details, but suffice it to say that many people are severely disappointed and we intend to follow up on this matter with Mr. Tucker in the very near future.
Lastly, in light of the assertions made over at NAC today concerning their planned campaigning come next May, we would like to respond in-kind;
We take this as a challenge to the Council Members that we feel have the most concern for the City, and are most in touch with their respective constituents. Therefore, we’ll meet their challenge and pledge to work diligently on the behalf of re-election campaigns.
More importantly, we are committed to educating citizens about the dispositions, behaviors, and attitudes of those who will be challenging our Council representatives. That, my friends, will be the ultimate downfall of the progressive movement.