“Public Safety” Dollars to be Used for Vehicle Allowance Perks?

After I read the article referenced below, it reminded of a joke. This guy goes to his father-in-law and tells him that he needs $30,000 for an operation that will save his daughter’s life. The father-in-law says, “No, you’ll just spend it on gambling and booze.” The son-in-law says, “Oh no I won’t. I’ve got money for that.”

So, the Gilbert Town Council goes to the Gilbert taxpayers and tells them that they need $7 million to pay for Public Safety. The taxpayers say, “No, you’ll just spend it on recreation, welfare, and entitlements.” The Council says, “Oh no we won’t! We’ve got money for that!”

Here’s a quote from Craig Harris’s recent article, published on AZ Central, titled “Amid Budget Cuts, Valley Cities Continue to Keep Vehicle Perks.”

“In communities where a group of employees receive (vehicle) allowances, Gilbert (23 employees) had the highest monthly average of $507. Tempe (16 employees) was second.”

http://www.azcentral.com/news/articles/2010/02/24/20100224city-vehicle-perks.html

This is “Gilbert is lean”? Today, the Town of Gilbert Home Page indicates 8 job openings. Six are for Parks and Recreation positions, plus one engineer, and one police officer. It costs the taxpayer $16,000 per month to pay a staff person to lay out and write”Your Town.” That doesn’t include $9,000 per month to print it , and $10,000 in postage to mail it to 70,000 households. The “free” Concerts in the Park are funded by the taxpayers. In fact, none of the special events truly break even. What happened to all the recommendations submitted by the Citizens Budget Committees, the Steering Committee, the Town employees? Since the Gilbert Town Council made the decision to send a tax increase to a vote, any discussion of budget cuts died.

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