I’m Sorry, But…

County Executive Ike Leggett yesterday announced his projected budget for fiscal year 2010 (which begins July 1).  This budget is a 2% increase over last year, which is relatively restrained.  Nevertheless, one has to ask: Why is it higher than last year at all?  If revenues are so low, why isn’t the County Executive proposing a budget that spends *less* than last year?

The press release notes that the budget provides no cost-of-living increases for those county employees who are fortunate enough to keep their jobs.  However, the budget projects that at least 234 employees will lose their jobs.

It’s never a good time to get laid off; this is a particularly lousy time for it.  But let’s be sure we understand why this is happening.  The county is facing a tremendous gap between what it spends and what revenues are coming in.  The shortfall will increase next year by another $250 million.

The reason for this is a continual pattern of profligate spending by the county government.  In each of the past ten years, the government budget has increased by nearly 7%. Over the past five years, the average increase has been closer to 7.2%.   (Okay, readers:  how many of you consistently increase your spending 6-8% every year?)

The County Council and Executive have had no brake on their spending.  No thought was given to fiscal restraint, concern for the taxpayers, or even the possibility that sky-high tax revenues might not continue forever.  The philosophy was: If you’ve got it, spend it.  And if you don’t got it, spend it anyway.  This is just the chickens coming home to roost.

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2 Comments on “I’m Sorry, But…”

  1. lar Says:

    one dark night i entered and said to the bartender, I’ve killed a man.
    He said, You’ve killed a man.
    I said, yes I’ve killed a man.
    He said, what was his name,
    I said zinzindor
    He said zinzindor
    I said yes, zinzindor
    He said’ you don’t mean ZIN ZIN DOR
    I said, yes, I do mean ZIN ZIN Dor
    SUBMIT THE NEXT 3 LINES, ELIGBLE FOR GRAND PRIZE!!!

    • Kerri Scharlin Says:

      You have killed my brother
      This calls for a duel;
      Retiring to the outskirts of the city
      I, being the innocent man,
      Shot first, killing my opponent


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