Some Numerical Observations

The City is seeking a 4.63 percent tax increase. There will be a public hearing July 3, 2007, for non-time limited comment on this issue. (The date was no doubt selected to ensure maximum public involvement, right?)

The City's total tax revenue last year was $12,661,975 (p.1). 4.63% of that amount is $586,249.44. A pittance, right?

Do we really need to raise taxes to get that money? Or, perhaps, could different decisions have prevented this tax increase?

For example, we have paid SME over $1,500,000.00 in development costs for the coal plant. That amount alone would have funded nearly three years of our increased revenue needs.

Further, our electric utility, Electric City Power, lost $425,388.00 in the fiscal year ending 6/30/06. (p.7) That could have gone a ways toward addressing any shortfall, couldn't it?

How much did we lose on Explore: The Big Sky? How much do we use on golf courses? How much do we spend on the water park?

My point here is not to simply attack everything the city has done. Doesn't anyone else see a trend? When our city government ventures outside of its traditional roles and begins assuming what would normally be a more private-sector role we end up paying, and paying, and paying.

It isn't just the financial drain, either. It's also the 'brain drain.' We pay a full-time City Manager and a full-time Fiscal Services Director. Check their schedules and you'll see how much time both spend managing the city's electric utility. (I would say check their appointment books, or their email, but those have never been produced!)

If city government would, perhaps, stick to the knittin', they might have a better handle on the core functions. Who knows, better management of these functions might result in lower costs. Lower costs might result in no tax increase.


Anonymous said...

Looks like prima Donna needs extra cash to settle what should be a hefty civil case with Susan Overfield.

GeeGuy said...

I don't really see it as a hefty civil case. Why do you? What are Ms. Overfield's damages?

Anonymous said...

Hey, it's free press and evidently it and this website have people talking.

It seems like she's getting the bargain in the deal.

GeeGuy said...

Lynne: You're welcome to post your comments here, but I am not going to let you libel someone. So I removed part of your post. The balance of your comment follows:

I suspect a civil rights violation for being assaulted and roughed up by a cop that failed to identify himself for starters.

A citizen dragged out of a public meeting for daring to challenge prima Donna (good one anonymous) on the truth. This if anything ever has, qualifies as a true hate crime.

The public wants answers and accountability.


GeeGuy said...

Lynne: Now that we've removed the potential defamation, you have described her claim but not her damages.

What are her damages, really?