AT A VERY SPECIAL MEETING
First up, we would like to welcome Mark Robarge to the scrum. Mark is a new editor/reporter at The Record. We hope he follows in the footsteps of the areas good political reporters: Chet Hardin, Shawn Charniga and Tim O'Brien. This article is a promising start. A bit more meat-on-the-bone than we've seen in the past (or at least since Cinema Art closed).
According to the article (and as we reported on November 21, 2015), the new revenue enhancement proposal would mean a roughly 5% tax increase. This proposal would still be in excess of the real property tax cap and legislation will be needed for the override. According to the article:
"Rosamilia offered the compromise this week in a letter to current council members in which he calls for trimming an additional $463,000 in spending and adding another $250,000 in revenue to his initial, $68.6 million proposal. The plan stays true to Rosamilia’s pledge to avoid layoffs or cuts in essential services, but calls for eliminating four vacant positions in the city assessor’s office, central garage and recreation, as well as a $145,000 cut in the city’s contingency fund, increasing the amount of profit transferred from the city’s water fund by $250,000 and bumping up the total assessed value of property citywide by nearly $900,000."
Mayor Elect Madden responded enthusiastically: “It looks like his budget works, if everything falls into place,” Madden said. “It works on paper, but we’re going to have to deal with reality.”
Council President Elect Carmella Mantello (aka C-Lo) was equally enthusiastic: "They’re really doing nothing more here than rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic,” Mantello said.
C-Lo just doesn't appreciate that there's going down with the ship and then there's going down with the ship in style. Besides, she better get used to it as the new Titanic Cruise Director. The real question is, will Carmella make room on the door for Pat after the ship goes down or, like Rose, hog the entire door while Pat succumbs to hypothermia?
The Special Meeting is scheduled for Monday. It should be, as always, quite a spectacle. We do not believe the tax cap will be breached. The four nays (Wiltshire, Gordon, Robertson & Zalewski) seem intractable. Alas, if they had only shown such backbone in the past. The fact is, they do not want this to occur no matter the consequences. Three of the four seem more than willing to sabotage the incoming administration and council, which is their right, of course.
While Mantello's comment isn't completely false, 'they' have been rearranging, painting, sanding and refinishing the chairs on the Titanic for more than a decade and the ship is still afloat, albeit listing. We'll look at that in the near future.
In the meantime, shuffle board in Barker Park, anyone?