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News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.
Opening Arguments

Give us more!

This does not compute:

The budget remains flat from last year, but the portion of it supported through property taxes will increase from $132.5 million to $134.9 million because the city will request the maximum levy at 2.9 percent, said Roller.

[. . .]

The city has an estimated cash reserve balance of $25 million, twice the 7 percent to 10 percent of the tax-supported revenue amount that is required.

They want to raise $2.4 million through a tax increase while they're sitting on $25 million. Not exactly a "We feel your pain" messsage, is it?


William Larsen
Fri, 10/01/2010 - 12:16am

What cash reserve is sufficient? For me I like a three year cash reserve that keeps me from having to sell equities in down turns. The city is a bit different in that its revenues may not go completely to zero, but could be subpar for many years. With unemployment at 10%, people saving more, reducing revenues, home values dropping, reducing property tax revenues, I could envision the city's revenues dropping easily by 10% a year. To me the city should have far more than $25 million in reserves. Social Security legislation that its trust fund be maintained at 20% of projected expenses on a yearly basis either by cutting benefits or raising taxes.

In my opinion, the city budget should match that of the tax base. Instead of thinking it can raise property taxes 2%, maybe they should be reducing property taxes by 2% or reducing costs by 2% so that the community paying the taxes and those who work for the taxpayers share the pain.

I see not reason why city workers deserve a raise in a nearly zero inflation year, when unemployment is 10%, home values are falling and there are surplus skilled workers. If a city worker does not think they are paid enough, they are free to go somewhere else. I am sure there would be 100 applications for each city worker who leaves a job.