The City of Troy, New York, "Where Henry Hudson Turned Around."

Thursday, February 18, 2016

FISCAL REPORTCARD IS IN

Lou was a pleasure to have in class but did not complete his assignments. May need to stay after for extra help.

Few things make Democratus' 10th grade report card look good. One of those things is the New York State Comptroller's Audit of the City finances, 2012-2015. Troy should be glad that M.A. O'Brien wasn't grading them.

Jim Franco, at the Talk 1300 Report, has a good summary of the findings and the report for those masochistic enough to peruse the carnage. Not recommended for tax payers with high blood pressure.

Yet, is there anything in the audit, broadly speaking, that we didn't know? We know these practices went on during Rosamilia's reign. We knew it was going on during Tutunjian's reign. Yes, Mayor Tutunjian spent down reserves, juggled the water and sewer funds and consistently overestimated revenues. Tutunjian simply had the luxury of more reserve funds to dip in to when he didn't want to raise taxes. As the report notes, the Capital Reserve Fund went from $6.5 million to $900,000 from between 2006 o 2014.

We're not sure what is worse, the idea that Rosamilia was simply incompetent  in fiscal matters, that he failed to have the intestinal fortitude to be honest with the residents of Troy or that Roseanne Barr had a successful television show for years. Troy spends more than it takes in! There, that's it. And we're not even an HVCC accounting professor.

That's the big picture. Don't raise taxes, move money around to veil the problem.

Who to blame? First, the Canadians, of course. Next, in no particular order, Mayors Rosamilia and Tutunjian. The various City Councils for failing in their watchdog role. And the voters. Both mayors submitted smoke-screen budgets. Most of our City Councils picked around the edges of the budgets but never truly analyzed the issues. And the voters. We allow these practices or ignore them and then act shocked when there are problems. Madden appears to be handling this head on, in an honest way. In fact, he really has no choice. The Band-Aid has been pulled off, the scab revealed. He's right that the blame-game does not move us forward. However, it is cathartic.

There are other items in the report that are inexplicable and inexcusable.

"We also found that the Comptroller failed to maintain individual accounting records for each capital project (project) and the Council did not monitor the financial activity of projects. As a result one project that we reviewed was overspent by $425,261, project expenditures were funded through the use of other projects’ funds, debt proceeds have been improperly commingled with other City funds and $85,334 in debt proceeds were used for an unauthorized purpose. Consequently, as of May 31, 2015, the general fund owed $688,929 to the capital projects fund and $85,334 to the special revenue fund, and the water fund owed $466,753 to the capital projects fund, which will negatively impact the financial condition of these funds."
 
Isn't that just the cat's ass. No individual accounting records? Overspent by half a million dollars? That's a lot of hookers and blow. Isn't it a comptroller's job to know what comes in and record where the money goes?

The underlying reality is this: Cost go up over time. Cuts should be made but cuts won't solve the problem. Taxes will need to be raised if you want to balance the books. That is just a fact. The politician who has the guts to propose cuts and be honest about a tax hike should have our respect. We shall see who is a leader and who is a politician.

Now, tax hikes are not long term solutions either. The solution is as obvious as the problem. The tax base needs to be increased. That is a gamble. Every municipality will be a competitor for that tax base. We can focus on a few things that will help in the long run. In addition to an annual garage sale, we should work to improve the reputations of our schools. Troy needs young, professional families and high on their list of priorities is the school district. Reputations are not reality but our reputation is not good. Not terrible, but not good.

That is just nipping at the heels of the problem. Until the tax base increases, we are screwed.

Good luck out there.



 


57 comments:

Anonymous said...

Although Tutunjian had small tax increases in his budget the democratic council lead by Dunne and Campana drew on the reserves to bring the tax down to 0. Let's get our facts straight. Now lets blame the voter? OK, are you admitting that blind democratic allegiance and believing the lies of the candidates and party proper is the fault of the voter? Just asking.

Anonymous said...

Again, Harry does no wrong

Anonymous said...

M.A Obrien reference just gave me nightmares

GIVE ME A F'IN BREAK. said...

Harry cost this city BIG time by giving big tax breaks, PILOTS & IDA's which resulted in no tax revenues. The city had to pay out for many lost law suits and legal fees for countless dumb decisions. He signed the city up with a 1.2 million plus contract to do a reassessment which resulted in a net zero increase in tax revenues...but his property assessment was reduced by $50,000 in one of the city's better neighborhoods. The list is too long and painful. And now both he and his wife are making good money & benefits off patronage jobs in the county. TYPICAL CORRUPTION PAY BACK!

Anonymous said...

Pilots IDA ? Stop by tomorrow at city hall at 10 AM and you'll see plots IDA's .

Anonymous said...

Actually, Harry had a very big tax increase his first year. Then, he prided himself on no tax increases until the final year when he threatened a 24% tax increase. There was a memo from Witkowski indicating that there would have to be DPW layoffs and Mirch and his cronies showed up to protest. Harry used to move money around to cover costs going up all the time. He also had a GOP council the first few years. So, there is plenty of blame to go around. What? We can't point the finger at Saint Harry?

Mrs. Tutunjian said...

Fuck off. Tutunjian was perfection personified. Forget the fact that his dog Mitchell continuously obstructed various council people from getting information. If you question his majesty, you were met with childish ridicule. Then, when proven wrong, Tutu and his minions would double-down with their nonsense.

Tutunjian actually told the press that he wasn't raising taxes though costs were going up. He told the public he was using the reserve fund so taxes were not raised. He moved water and sewer funds around.

Don't forget, Harry asked for and his GOP council gave us a bigger tax hike than Rosamilia and that incompetent bunch.

Harry was a disaster protected by hacks like Franco who rarely asked follow-up questions for fear of being frozen out of the loop. Harry started a war on the police and now he can't get elected or a find job in the private sector. Pathetic.

Robert Cox said...

Franco Did not got his day in the Sun Like Crists Did by Hijacking the Troy Records Toilet Paper of Choice Franco is slumming with the Vandenburg Clan And Freds Dickers Dick Pole Puffing Corporation !~~!

Robert Cox said...

As Far as Tutunjian he will be cast as the most useless Human Debris To Ever Wash up on the Polluted Beaches on The Hudson We in The South Say Useless as Tits on a Bull !~~!

Anonymous said...

Harry left office and the good people left Troy. That's it in a nut shell. Look at what we have now in this city. Are you better off than 4 years ago? I don't think so.

Anonymous said...

Through all this gimmickry originaitng with Dworsky, the same city comptroller was overseeing the books, Joe Mazzariello. He should be exposed for being complicit in getting the city into this fix.

Anonymous said...

Some truth to 8:31 PM's posting ?
Was Mazzariello in fact on the scene with Dworsky ?
If so, that might explain a lot.
Is there such a thing as accounting/fiscal malpractice ?
There is such a thing as willful blindness and it is criminal.
In any event is this something that should be pursued if the
answer(s) to the question(s) is "yes".

Anonymous said...

Now Bobby, c'mon my brother. Suppress the anger over your brothers property still being an empty lot after all these years. Get in touch with the inner Booby we all know is in there. Feel the love, empty your soul, and release the anger. I feel your pain vary much.Or, just go fuck yourself.

The truth is evident. said...

Harry and all his supporters are the ultimate definition for the word DELUSIONAL. That is what the GOP does to folks. Hateful, ignorant, bigots, who think they have all the answers.

Robert Cox said...

Joe Mazzariello Do You mean That Guy Who Constantly St-udders and Talks to him self and answers himself too !~~!

Anonymous said...

Ditto....Troy High flashbacks!!!
....Calvin Spaulding

Anonymous said...

Too, too Troy High centric here....Harry the hype, MA O'Brien, what's next that crazed funnybook arteest selling elevator keys, streakers at the Senior banquet? Some big slob handcuffingers a Ghostbusters namesake to a locker???
.....Pat McGroyne

Anonymous said...

Sheeran vandenburgh mitchell??

Anonymous said...

Thats the voices in your head uncle lug nut

Vito said...

U make no sense?

Anonymous said...

One flaw in your Dunne-Campana theory. It's called a veto. Why didn't he exercise it, if the damage was saw obvious?

Anonymous said...

M.A O'Brien was social studies

Anonymous said...

Don't muddle up Tuts delusional by stating facts. Tutunjian was a disaster, a failure at everything he did on his own. He must thank the lord every day for a hard working dad with deep pockets because without his Dad or the friends he took care of as mayor, he'd be scrubbing pots and pans with his former spokesman.

Anonymous said...

6:23 It's called veto-override with a democratic super majority. I think Manorys is looking for a dishwasher, are you qualified?

Anonymous said...

Great blog, you allow an obvious sick individual (Robert Cox) who celebrates in the death of Mr. Chamberlain, flees jurisdiction and now pokes fun at a man's disability for stuttering. You folks who write this are no better than Cox himself. Birds of a feather......

Monkey See Monkey Do said...

Not to change the subject but did anyone else get that red post card inviting one to participate in an "anonymous" survey online about the Troy Police Department? (put out by SurveyMonkey.com)

Very interesting questions but no where does it allow for responses to the real problems.

WHO is paying for this survey? Carmzilla?

Anonymous said...

Boo fucking hoo !! Want some tissue? What a cry naby

Anonymous said...

Tutunjian is to Troy what George W. Bush is to the United States.
Those who think Tutunjian was a good mayor are probably delusional enough to believe that W. Bush was a good President.

Phana24JG said...

Seven years of this hapless moron currently occupying the WH makes Bush look like Mount Rushmore material.

Anonymous said...

11:48 AMEN!!

Anonymous said...

LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOUUUUUUUU. How we doing after those 4 years??? Code enforcement wake up yet after 4 yrs of driving by the obvious? Hugs got Thugs working yet? Keep drinking the kool-aid. F-in delusional world you live in pardner

Anonymous said...

Who cares about Harry? He's irrelevant.

Anonymous said...

You're a piece of shit Cox.You have no idea of what Joe Maz is, was, or has done.He didn't mess things up. He was doing what he was told to do, against his, and Chamberlains advice. You've never accomplished Jack leg shit for this city, so you should just shut the fuck up. You ran down Bill, who was a good man, and now Maz. You're obviously a person of either low intelligence or just an asshole - or maybe a combo of both.

Anonymous said...

Former spokesperson doing quite well these days Coop.Yes working in a nice airconditioned office making good money. Too hot in the summer laying blacktop. That's one of the perks of being educated- makes you more employable.

Anonymous said...

wow, you sound bitter.

Anonymous said...

oh you care..

Anonymous said...

The amount of censorship that hovers over the submitted comments to this blog seriously impacts the validity of all the comments.

Anonymous said...

As a Vandenburg ( he forgets the h) it's a bag of honor that I'm not up to Robert Cox standards.

Anonymous said...

4:27 Oh he's both and add coward to the mix. It would probably be best to ignore him and his intellectually deficient defenders, as in democratus himself. The more you provide him with a venue the more it reflects on the very people who support him. That Cox stink will never wash off.

Anonymous said...

Pathetic indeed

Anonymous said...

Hey, Jeff Pirro washes dishes too!

Anonymous said...

Are you insinuating that people moved out of Troy because Tut was no longer mayor? Did you really believe that? Do you understand how ridiculous that sounds? Do you even care?

Drew Cooper said...

Again, not me!!!! But keep obsessing if it makes you feel better. I wish I did write that post, it's perfect and I would be proud to put my name on it, and I would call Jeff Dahlmer look a like Jeff Pirro out by name so everyone understood who I was referring to. I'll be out for Troy night out Friday. Find me and say hi

Anonymous said...

I don't know about you guys but I was doing better when Harry/Bush held office.

Anonymous said...

Better off when Bush was in office? You may be but by all measurable economic standards the country is better off today. GDP and GNP are both up compared to Bush's last year in office. Unemployment is down compared to 2008. We import 8 million fewer barrel of oil per day. Gas prices have plummeted. The markets are demonstrably stronger. Economic growth was -3 when Bush left office. It is now +2. Even teen pregnancy is almost half of what it was. I am not suggesting things are great or that a President is responsible for all the good or all the bad, but don't be silly. We can measure certain things and they all point to the economy being much better than when Bush left office. The Republican candidates are not running around asking Reagan's famous question: "Are you better off than you were four years ago?" Because they know the answer.

Anonymous said...

Damn you! Using facts? That's not fair!

Robert Cox said...

https://www.facebook.com/DonaldTrump/

Anonymous said...

How about race relations? What our position on the world stage? When will you be putting out the Harry/Lou numbers?

Anonymous said...

I too hope we can return to the days of recession, unemployment and botched foreign policy.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, getting those gas prices down in just 7 years was quite the accomplishment! Losing my health care policy and now paying double is pretty cool too.

Anonymous said...

Yes, instead of racial and political hatred and our country now being the democratic and liberal mantra "the victim".

Anonymous said...

Race relations? The GOP hasn't been interested in race relations since 1965. Stop with your Fox News/Limbaugh talking points. You're embarrassing yourself. The test isn't perfection. The poster said things are factual better than under Bush. They are and you guys can't stand it.

Obamacare has problems but the GOP isn't even using it as a campaign point. Sorry your premiums went up but its doubtful you're paying double. That, again, sounds like Sean Hannity. Thanks for playing though.

Anonymous said...

We don't have a race problem
Signed the 3 girls on the bus at U-Albany.

Anonymous said...

You obviously do not know what you're talking about regarding healthcare. Take a look at the prices of a platinum plan and what it covers. My old plan prior to Obamacare, had the same exact deductibles as I have now paying double. I have my own business and need to pay for my own health care, and do not have the luxury for public sector position, with Cadillac health care for minimal cost.

Drew Cooper said...

They put air conditioning in at Dinosaurs scrubbing area?

Anonymous said...

Yes, unfortunately they will never put air conditioning in RCJ.

Anonymous said...

What about state prisons? Does Danamora have air conditioning? Because that's where you humps are headed