Monday, June 07, 2010

Budget Battles Loom

OK, the Sacramento trip is off, so this week may only be half as disastrous as I thought it might be. Unless, that is, the folks in Sacramento get their act together and we end up launching a team to the Capitol later in the week. That, of course, would put it right in the middle of the budget deliberations...

Speaking of which, City Manager Allan Roeder wrote a commentary for the Daily Pilot on the subject of the budget which appeared in print Sunday. Strangely - another of those system bugs yet to be ironed out - it didn't appear in the Pilot online, but is available for online viewing at the OC Now site. You can read it HERE.

In it Roeder does a good job of presenting what amounts to a preamble to this week's activities - Tuesday's City Council Budget Study Session, which has been moved to the Council Chambers because of the anticipated crowd. This also means it will likely be televised live by CMTV on Channel 24 - 99 on U-Verse, and also be available for viewing at a later date on streaming video at the city web site. The study session begins at 4:30.

Thursday it is anticipated that there will be a community budget workshop at City Hall for interested residents. That is scheduled for Conference Room 1A and begins at 6 p.m. In years past it has been sparsely attended and has lasted a couple hours.

Both meetings conflict with the Lakers/Celtics playoff games, which might make for a shorter-than-normal meeting. Only kidding...


The study session on Tuesday could be long and contentious. I imagine some residents will stand and ask how their participation in prioritization exercise will affect the outcome. The likely answer may be - "Not at all", which is probably true. The sad fact of life today is that all those positions mentioned in that exercise MUST be cut, and probably more, too. If recent public pronouncements by one of the union's leaders is any indication, it looks like we might expect less cooperation from the bargaining units than last year. Unfortunately, if more folks don't share the load that simply means more people will lose their jobs - there is no other solution.

I'm going to be very interested to hear how the council members completed their forms. In theory, they are part of the public record and available for review and comment. We'll see.


Sources tell me that City Hall was like a morgue last week because the required pink slips - notices of layoff - were handed out to most of those 70+ people who will probably lose their jobs. I know some of those folks and have spoken with several others over the years. It pains me deeply to see this happening through no fault of their own.

By the way, I've avoided mentioning the blithering idiot who operates out of Mesa North - our old buddy The Mouth - but I cannot close without a comment on his blog entry today. In his clever (in his mind) way he responded to Roeder's letter with some suggestions for balancing the budget. The first item on his list - we assume it was the most important in his alleged Mensa Mind - was, "Cut everything that benefits illegal aliens in any way." Now, that's a nice, reasoned approach, don't you think? Yes sir, his prejudices are so pervasive that he wants to cut EVERYTHING that might affect illegal aliens. So, I guess that means no Police or Firefighters will keep their jobs. How about the jailers? Actually, I guess he means that we should just shut down city government entirely, since there is a chance that EVERY person on the payroll might benefit an illegal alien. What a racist bonehead he is! And he's begun quoting and linking a lot to Aljazeera, the Muslim newspaper, lately - wonder what that's all about? Has our old pal found an even darker side? That's hard to imagine, but it may be true. In past posts he's been very pro-Iran...

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