As I watched the Super Bowl, I happened to pick up the Advocate’s Sunday edition (Feb. 1) and noted the headline “Leaders propose to move around taxes.” This caught my attention, and as I read the article, I was amazed at what I read.
The article notes that some Metro Council members are looking at ways to move dedicated funds to uses other than what they were approved for by voters. Councilman Ryan Heck, speaking of dedicated funding taxes, is quoted stating, “It’s made some institutions, for lack of a better term, wealthy, while others suffer.” The article indicates that Councilman John Delgado and others are trying to figure out a way to raid the library funds for other uses. Apparently, they have also decided that BREC has too much money, too.
It amazes me that elected officials cannot comprehend “we the people” will approve appropriate projects and programs and decline to support others as is our right. When “we the people” specifically vote to dedicate funds to the library system, or BREC, voters expect to have the funds spent on what was approved.
It is interesting that we have two departments of local government that actually seem to be living within their revenues, something that is really unique. The article notes that the library system does not start projects unless they have the funds to undertake the project. Gee, what a novel idea!
Voters are tired of politicians pulling fast ones on us. Too many times the local and state budgets come up short because elected officials do not understand simple budgeting and how to live within revenues, then scramble to try and cover shortfalls caused by doing dumb things private industry could not get away with. Things like purchasing a property with no thought to the cost of converting a hospital building to a police station, and the operating costs involved.
The council is, however, in good company and not unique. The sheriff buys surplus military helicopters without any idea of operating costs. The governor and Legislature raid the state employee health insurance system and higher education funding for other uses and still have a multibillion-dollar shortfall to deal with, just to name a few.
Mr. Heck, the voters decided where they wanted their taxes spent, and voted that way. It is not up to you, in your “wisdom,” to override that vote because you do not approve of the result.
The reason voters dedicate funds is quite simple: They do not trust politicians like you, and your comments clearly show why.