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Sunday, March 19, 2006

Lynchburg City Budget: Out of Control

If you do not know by now, the Lynchburg City budget is out of control, while the current city council tells you all is well.

As custodians of our tax money, they have launched many spending programs that defy imagination. Chuck Gammon points this out with the two hundred thousand dollar spending on outside consultants on the mid town plan.

Council members continue to self praise what a great job they are doing in what they claim is a cash strapped budget. We disagree.

There is a lot of fat that needs to be cut. And with their private agendas and failure to see were cuts can be easily made, they are doing a disservice to each and every tax payer.

As the Lynchburg Area blog points out, we have seen a 250 percent increase in the size of the budget since 2001. Lynchburg city council is saying there will be no increases in taxes this year. But, that really is a tongue in cheek statement. They have found another way to skin the cat with increasing real estate taxes. In their budget apprasial they have planned for property assessments to increase.

This from the proposed budget statement:

"Property values are also rising with next year’s reassessment expected to show increases
of ten to fifteen percent (10-15%)."

We looked at the planning commission budget. There is a lot of fat there. And there is something they have been getting away with for years. Miscellaneous is the largest part of their operating budget. 7,166 dollars a month can currently be used in a slush fund. That amounts to 86,000 a year, and indicates they need to take a knife to the budget. It should also tell us the City Council is letting them spend without accountability.

If you think services are better in Lynchburg, try giving them a call. You will be sure to find that we are here to serve them, and could careless about your problem.

Here is a recent example from my experience. A neighbor had a large dog tied to a tree that he kept there all the time without shelter. The rope the dog was tied to was about six feet long and the dog was constantly wrapped around the tree. All day long the dog barked and cried. I called the animal warden. It took two calls to get him to come out and investigate. He stated the dog was fine as long as the rope was twice the dog's length. Because of neighborhood reaction, they had to give away the dog. The city failed to act at all.

The point is city government has become a self serving entity. They do not want their boat rocked. And they continue to opt for a budget that serves them, rather than providing services the community needs.

Note: The citation that the Lynchburg budget has grown 250 percent since 2001 has been reported as an error. The true growth according to the City Manager is 5 to 7 percent per year. All other figures in this post are accurate.


At 8:40 PM, Blogger said...

The budget is out of control and everyone seems to be ignoring this. What a burden we are saddling our children with. There is also no reason for Gas to be as high as it is. America has one of its biggest stockpiles of reserve petroleum in history, hybrids vehicles are now flooding the roads, and the cost of a barrel of oil has dropped steadily in the past two weeks. When you add all of these issues up something does not seem right with the cost of a gallon of gas. I think our politicians need to be more involved, and we need investigations. Why should big oil companies drill us again?
Raymond B

At 11:55 PM, Anonymous "Conservative" said...

The $86,000 thing is nothing. Have you taken a look at city vehicles? We're talking very expensive ($50,000 vans?) and new vehicles on the road now for everyone from the Police department to Schools and other local government employees. Do they all really need the best of everything?

When you add all these cars, vans, buses, and trucks up, you're talking a whole lot of money that probably doesn't need to be spent in the first place if they could keep the older ones running and in service.

And all the "studies" that are done. If you have never seen one, you have no idea what all is involved with them or how much they cost for information that probably is not needed to the extent these things go into in the first place.


At 12:28 AM, Blogger B O B said...

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