I am Carol and my home is in District 6
I will be addressing Item G3
“The budget should be balanced, the Treasury should be refilled, public debt should be reduced, the arrogance of officialdom should be tempered and controlled, …”
Before you credit me with this profound statement, let me give the credit to Marcus Tullis Cicero, a Roman philosopher, orator and statesman. He made this statement more than 2000 years ago. Cicero then predicted that Rome would become bankrupt if his advice was ignored. Most Senators, in all their arrogance, ignored his advice and Rome, well Rome became bankrupt and then fell. Commissioners, my question to you is this: Will this county meet the same fate?
You begin to consider the 2011-12 budget tonight. It appears balanced. Because the income does not equal the expenditures, it is not a balanced budget. Monies have been taken from the debt fund and the rainy day fund to partially cover expenses; this ignores the warning from the credit rating people that previous use of the debt fund to balance the budget was what lowered our credit rating and the county should not do it anymore. This budget’s use of debt fund and rainy day funds is an invitation for the variable rate bonds to be called. With our current credit rating, refinancing called bonds will be nearly impossible without having outrageously high interest rates. Some of you commissioners think that there is not a problem. I think this is a huge problem!
In addition this budget has several million dollars in one time funding used for recurring expenses.
Balancing the budget will not be easy, but it must be done and increasing taxes to do it will result in even more economic problems in the community. Expenditures must be reduced.
Consideration by this commission of the health insurance report that it requested and paid for with county monies has not yet occurred. Why would this commission request a study and then refuse to hear the report? Is this a form of the arrogance of which Cicero spoke? If this Commission would require county workers to pay a small amount for their health insurance this action would assist in balancing the budget by reducing expenditures..
Additionally this budget proposal puts every property owner at risk because property taxes would be used to pay off any called bond that could not be refinanced! If this causes the county to be declared bankrupt, the tax rate will be determined by a Federal Judge – not this commission. Any person unable to pay the property taxes will be foreclosed on. Now tell me that there is not a problem.