To the editor:
Mill-levy increases would be less or unwarranted if local governments operated as a democracy. If the majority governed, there would be no cronyism, tax abatements, special tax districts, no-bid contracts or Taj Mahal recreation center.
Lawrence finished in 178th place out of 179 in the recent Milken Institute national economic study of small metropolitan areas. This should be a wakeup call that our cronyism form of government is not working.
Local governments’ wants, rather than the electorates’ needs have driven mill levies higher at a time when total local tax revenues have increased. Increasing mill levies on a stagnant tax base begets no growth.
Local government’s number one budget (Santa Claus wish list) consideration is fulfilling their personal wants prior to the needs of the electorate. These wants include increasing salaries, pensions, retention bonuses and ensuring that increasing health insurance premiums will be borne by the electorate.
The fact that local governments have prescribed Ramen noodles for the electorate while they enjoy their Kardashian lifestyle violates every rule of moral and business ethics. They need to be reminded that they are employees of the electorate and not self-appointed pharaohs.
Each of us has a duty and obligation to insure that our elected officials and administrators are held accountable and adhere to their fiduciary responsibility. Fuzzy math and fairy dust are the hallmarks of cronyism and can not be tolerated in a democracy.
Please help initiate change in our community by voting in every election.