|Posted on February 11, 2011 at 1:44 PM||comments (0)|
The first round of budget meetings were held on Feb 8th, the next is Feb 22nd. In this meeting the department heads presented their goals and accomplishment and touched on the vision for the future. I was impressed on the depth of knowledge the managers had in their respective fields and their enthusiasm toward their jobs.
Some items discussed were still fuzzy to me. I still cannot see the justification for spending $40k/yr for cell phones. I understand the need to communication but 2-way radios work for the bulk of what they are doing, which is interpersonnel communication like one plow driver talking to another or the coordinator ensuring certain streets are covered. I get it that maybe the managers need these phones but not the staff.
There are dozens of associations and memberships that the village spends tax payer funds on. Some of which I can see being beneficial but the majority are for personal want not village need. The dollars they use are comparatively small but if the village wants to voice that they are tightening their belt and looking under every stone to cut costs I think they've missed a few stones.
I still question the need for more than one fulltime I.T. person but will hold off on this item until a later time when I find out more of what the workload is for these people.
Lastly, TIFF districts. There will be a push in the near future for renewing, or creating a new, district for Meadowdale shopping center and there is talk about having at least one more for old Carpentersville in the area where Otto engineering is rehabilitating the buldings.
TIF's can be your friend or your most feaful and hated enemy. In the case of Meadowdale I believe that it has lived it's life and needs to be allowed to expire. The new TIF being considered in old Carpentersville may have been a good idea a couple of years ago when Mr. Roser started the rehab but with it nearly being completed I believe the TIF should not be created.
The real problem with TIF's is that you are essentially removing revenue from our schools at a time when they too are struggling to make ends meet and since these TIF districts can last for decades they should be used judiciously. Also, one must remember it is just another way of borrowing money defering the repayment to the future. We have had enough of our government using the future to pay for todays bad decisions.
There is an example of TIF's going bad right here in town. There is a TIF in the area of Rt31 & Huntley Rd/Main St. that was designated to replace the signals at the intersection. At the time of the TIF it was determined that it would take $100k to replace the traffic signals but that was in 1995 dollars. Today it is three times that cost so with all the good intention of creating that district to replace the traffic signals the plan failed due to inflation and changes in requirements for the signals. Now they are estimating that it is going to cost approximately $3.5M to rebuild the intersection to the new regulations and the lane widening requirement implemented by the state and county. The TIF failed it's intended purpose.
If elected as trustee I feel it is not only my position to do what is right for the citizens and the village but for the community as a whole. So as I said, in the case of old Carpentersville, I do not believe it would be a wise move for the community as a whole and since Mr Roser has already invested in the area no benefit will be realized.
I know sometime after the election this whole TIF discussion is going to be happening in full swing and have been made aware that our current village President as well as our new village manager are fully supportive of the TIF districts. We'll have to see how this plays out.
|Posted on February 4, 2011 at 4:48 PM||comments (0)|
What changes would you like to see in the village and the actions of the board?
|Posted on January 29, 2011 at 9:54 PM||comments (0)|
The taxpayers are on thehook for a $12M public works building that was originally described as anecessity to house vehicles so these costly assets could be protected and theirusable lifespan increased. Seems to me for $12M the wants overtook needs inthis instance and the citizens of Carpentersville were not properly represented.A pole barn could have been erected for a lot less than $12M and the intendedpurpose would have been served.
Another example, our village spends over $40k/yr on cellular services. Are these services required to run the village or are they just a convenience for the office folks. I believe they are just a convenience and this is yet another example of placing the wants of the bureaucracy over the requirements to run the village and placing another unwarranted financial burden upon of the citizens.
In the recent past, our village purchased a bunch of road resurfacing equipmenton the premise that they would recoup the cost by contracting out those services to neighboring communities but that has not happened. I do not believe the village should be in the business of competing with the private sector so these hard assets should be sold and any staff hired for the operations and maintenance of this equipment should be removed.
I think we need to look at our staffing and their roles. As an example, it maybe possible to contract building inspections from another municipality and remove that staff from our budget.
We need to look really hard at how the village is spending taxpayer funds because the time for raising fees and taxes has come to an end. It is beyond time to bring a in new perspective with thoughtful efficiencies into the business of running Carpentersville.
These are just a few examples of what needs to be corrected so the people of Carpentersville aren't on the hook for MORE bad decisions.
The village manager has the task of running the day-to-day operations of the village but it is the village board that has the task to bring the leadership of the village. The board has to bring a balance between the requirements ofthe village and the needs of the people so they are met in a fiscally responsible manner.
|Posted on January 29, 2011 at 9:52 PM||comments (0)|
- The constraints would be an ordinance forcing all increases of fees or taxes to be placed in a ballot referendum so the voters can decide on the increased costs not the village management.
|Posted on January 29, 2011 at 9:50 PM||comments (0)|
I think it is a travesty. Our economy is barely hanging on, unemployment is over 10%, a large number of village residents live on fixed incomes, and more than10% of the homes in this village stand vacant yet our board decides it is simpler to raise taxes than it is to tell the village management to cut their costs.