Seems the mayor is defending her stance…well here is mine.
Yes we are proposing cutting some services, primarily 4
Take home vehicles for some of the city employees
Code enforcement from 393,000 to 300,000, which would keep them inline with animal services budget.
To change the city newsletter from our own to contracting with the
valley journal saving 40,000
And cutting the mayors administrative budget from 1.9 m to 1.6 m. This is still a higher level than when she took office. This is by far the biggest cut in the budget. Some of us feel her administration is top heavy. As an example, we have a landscape architect making 110, 000 a year and benefits making her at about 150. The mayor also employs her own sister in law to work directly in her office at a salary of about 42,000. Her title is “special projects”. She was asked what this means.
You can see this dialogue about her staff online from the video of
the meeting last week on the city web site. Also, I would encourage
you to watch tonight and tomorrow on line as well or come. http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/88397548
We are not cutting police. We are not cutting fire. We are not cutting animal services. We did however move them. Animal services is to be moved to police and code enforcement to economic development. So it can be argued we dissolved urban livability, but we instead re assigned the two departments to other departments.
However we are looking at contracting ambulance with
county. Same with animal services. But at this time, all we are
looking for is a quote to see if there are any substantial savings.
Now the reason we are doing all of this…..capital projects. The
mayors budget decreased capital from over 6 million last year to 2.9 this year. The majority of the council feels that citizens pay
property taxes for capital, not to allow the mayor to have a top heavy administration, staffed by family and friends, and do so on the back of these capital projects.
As we cut these 4 items, we have decided that the things that matter to us are
A flashing crossing arm on 400 east and the trax line where 2 people were killed last year 200k
Curb gutter and sidewalk on penny ave 500k
Street scraping the rock islands on Helm and Baird ave 200k
And 500,000 into street lightening on our darkest streets.
This is where the cuts are being re allocated to.
As we made these proposals last week, the mayor asked us to give her a few days to come up with other numbers. What SHE came back with was
cutting one police officer, (No thank you)
cutting her administrative budget 18,000 instead of the 300,000
Cutting code enforcement salaries 100,500 instead of the overall 93,000 we are proposing, not to mention Nuisance property abatement program 20,000 and 2,000 for graffiti mitigation and cutting the freedom festival 5,000. (Funny, on her Facebook page she says this was us…The last three items came from her.)
Seems she is bent on not taking out of her own budget, taking it back to a level still higher than it was at when she took office.
I would gladly forward you the emails showing what she has proposed. You can see what we proposed by watching as much of the last meeting as you can tolerate, as it was 5 hours long.