Ken Ivins got a bad rap. While not the sharpest dresser or fast talker he always put the interest of the city’s taxpayer FIRST. Now after criticizing Ivin’s 0% tax increase for the 2012 budget we have our newly minted Commissioner of Finance Michele Madigan proclaiming that Ivin’s 2011 budget has left the city with a larger than anticipated surplus.
The unrestricted fund balance stands at about $6.2 million, up $2 million from 2010. Madigan believes the balance is supposed to be between 10 and 12.5 percent of the annual budget, and says by policy any excess or deficit needs to be addressed by the Finance commissioner. My question first is why? Policy can be changed.
She has some suggestions about how to spend the cash.Mindful the PBA was one of her biggest supporters, taking their endorsement and $1,000.00 from them she has proposed spending some of the surplus on police station renovations. This despite the fact there is already $50,000 in 2012 Capital Budget for renovations.
Now I know most of you read the Saratogian story today. I hope some of you read the Gazette story yesterday by Lee Coleman on the surplus. In it Madigan blames the surplus “on devastating cuts to essential services.”
Really Madigan, can you quantify that? I still see cops parked sitting for hours, sometimes with two to a car. We still have card games at the cities garage and working fireman roam the aisles of Price Chopper. Drastic cuts Michele?
The last council trimmed an ounce of fat on a 300 pound sow. No one even noticed.
Now want to know my predictions?
First thing Madigan and Public Safety Commissioner” toothy” Christian Mathiesen will passionately argue for restoration of a Personnel Director at over 100k a year, than they will lobby just as hard for “Screwy Louie” Benton’s return to city director of parks and open space for 100k a year. A useless patronage position created for him by Val Keehn and eliminated by Scott Johnson.
Of course they will also argue for more personal across the board in all departments, because their Democrats it’s what they do.
But the big one, the whole enchilada is a NEW POLICE STATION and eastern fire station.
Madigan and Mathiesen will be doing a lot of “new research” in the coming months and just like “Dear Leader” Ron Kim before them they will independently conclude “never been a better time to borrow money”
And this has been the plan from the first day they ran for office.
Remember you read it here first.