Budget Approved and "Tank Commander" Surfaces
Last night the Costa Mesa City Council - on a 4-0 vote with Mayor Bever absent again - approved the proposed budget, thereby authorizing the expenditure of $145,000,000 of your tax dollars during the 2008-2009 fiscal year. The approval was not unexpected - the staff had done their usual excellent job of preparing the budget based on the guidance provided by the council earlier this year.
CART RETRIEVAL UPHEAVAL
Mayor Pro Tem Allan Mansoor - running the meeting in Bever's absence - made a feeble attempt to derail the renewal of the $48,000 shopping cart retrieval cost, but didn't get support. His limited grey matter apparently caused him to forget that the contract as negotiated is subject to cancellation with short notice.
CAL TRANS PUSHING
The council rejected the hastily prepared request to spend $300,000 for monument markers along the 55 Freeway - a good move, in my view. The city was being pressured by Cal Trans to fund the creation of the markers this year after nearly three years of delays from the original request by the city.
ENTER THE "TANK COMMANDER"
One speaker before the council last night expressed much displeasure because the council was unwilling to follow his instructions to buy what he describes as "barracks-style" apartments, raze them and turn them into parks. He suggested using eminent domain and just "banking" the land for a greater use. He described these "offending" buildings as being similar to the barracks during his days as a Marine. He subsequently told us he had been a "Marine Tank Commander" - visions of Michael Dukakis in the tank immediately popped into my mind.
ROEDER SETS HIM STRAIGHT
Fortunately, City Manager Allan Roeder - prompted by Katrina Foley - set the record straight on what can and cannot be done with land purchased by the city. Of course, the Tank Commander had been lying through his teeth, but Roeder cleared that up. The Tank Commander posted the same lies on his blog this morning - never letting facts deter him from his goal of expunging the Latinos from our midst.
AS DOES RON SMITH
During another rant about graffiti in the city he fabricated other "facts". Again, Foley requested clarification from Costa Mesa Police Captain Ron Smith, who cleared up that bit of misinformation.
THE LIAR "TANKS"
I've throttled back my comments about the Tank Commander recently, but such overt manipulation cannot pass without being addressed. He stands before the council, criticizing and pontificating and manufacturing issues and "facts" as he goes. Fortunately, there is at least one person on the council smart enough to see through his bluster and willing to call him out. Good for Katrina Foley.
WHO WILL HE SUPPORT?
It will be very interesting to see where he throws his support this campaign season. He's undoubtedly unhappy with what he feels is the ignorance of the current council. You can define that as their unwillingness to follow his mantra like zombies. I suspect he will support more malleable candidates - those willing to follow his lead on issues. We'll see...