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Archive for Wednesday, August 22, 2012

City debt

August 22, 2012

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While our national discourse is about nastiness and the federal debt, our city is seemingly going the other way debt-wise. I refer, of course, to the recent library bond issue, the rec center and other expenditures.

Does anyone really believe the future of reading is in hard-cover books? We have unlimited information on the Internet, and have computers, Apples, iPads. telephones, cameras, Blackberries, electronic readers, audio books and, for all I know, blueberries, peaches and bananas available at our fingertips to replace the library. Why are we spending millions of dollars on a new building to add more meeting rooms and computers?  Use existing office space, or, instead of renting Borders, buy it, and remodel it for this and other office space the City says it needs.

This week we learned of the decision to change garbage pickup, with the main reason seemingly to reduce workers’ compensation costs. We are told that the trucks have the hydraulics necessary. While they do have hydraulics, they are not the ones specifically required to side-load/dump containers as the current recycling collector uses. What will the retrofit or new units cost? If we are going to do this, shouldn’t we also consider doing city-run recycling now? The procedure is the same, and, if our present collector is making a profit, which I must assume he is, wouldn’t the city do so also?

And how about our 90 miles of deteriorating roads?

Comments

Flap Doodle 1 year, 8 months ago

Print isn't dead by a long shot. Everything worth knowing isn't out there on the interwebs.

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Kendall Simmons 1 year, 8 months ago

Who the heck is this "current recycling collector" he keeps referring to? Does he truly not know that we have a number of private curbside recycling services in Lawrence? That there is no one city-sanctioned one?

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Richard Heckler 1 year, 8 months ago

H. Millard Klein maybe it's time to alter how final decisions are made at city hall? How about a Local Taxpayers Bill of Rights.

Perhaps it's time to create an active group of taxpayers to design an ordinance that places more final decisions in the hands of the voters. Yes a Local Taxpayers Bill of Rights for we the people who pay the bills.

For any group of politicians to believe that voters blindly trust politicians with their tax dollars is not real and hasn't been for at least 50 years. It would not matter who the commissioners are and would certainly be no different if I were a city commissioner or if you were a city commissioner.

Let’s place the voting taxpayers aka the largest group of stakeholders in Lawrence,Kansas in the position of deciding how they would like to have tax dollars spent. A Local Taxpayers Bill of Rights would be appropriate.

Taxpayers want more opportunity to approve tax incentives and projects such as the the monster field house tax dollar boon doggle.

Taxpayers want more opportunity to approve projects that involve tax dollars across the board. After all we taxpayers are the source for corporate welfare. Why shouldn't we have the opportunity to decide how reckless or how fiscally responsible our tax dollars should be expended?

Put this question on the upcoming ballot. Let's vote in a Local Taxpayers Bill of Rights.

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grimpeur 1 year, 8 months ago

"And how about our 90 miles of deteriorating roads?"

The roads? What about them? We passed a sales tax increase set aside for pothole repair. But it's still not enough revenue to support recreational drivers' lifestyle choices.

If you're really concerned about the state and cost of roads, you could start by asking your thousands of neighbors who are driving less than two miles to work, or the tens of thousands who are driving into or out of Lawrence, alone, every day, with 4-8 empty seats in their cars, past their neighbors' workplaces and past their coworkers' homes, alongside thousands of others doing the same thing and going to the same places, to walk, bike, or (the number one answer) carpool when possible.

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oneeye_wilbur 1 year, 8 months ago

Sure. Buy Borders and take it off the tax rolls. Great move!

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