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Mr. Magel's LTE and Mr. Arceri's LTE have the same theme, misinformation. I would like to offer a new word: PERSPECTIVE.
Let us look at your statement:
"There are statements made by bloggers and authors of letters to the editor in our papers that proclaim “City Debt is $400 Million,” “Spending is out of Control,” “The city employs too many people,” “We’re going broke,” etc."
1. "City debt is $400MM"Essentially represents total debt, showing P+I (Not found in balance sheets, but typically used for planning purposes, especially when reviewing best use of capital/cash or refinancing)
2. "Spending is out of Control". Simply refer back to the consultant review of the water/sewer expansion and debt relative to .....other cities of comparable size/needs.
3. "City employs too many employees"This statement should be revised to show that 10% should be replaced, as in most businesses, a la Jack Welch. My concern, the 10% reside in high city management positions and those are the most difficult to remove.
4. "We're going broke"If history has any meritorious value, this city had a surplus at one time and now ...... and all I have to show is a brown lawn. From my perspective, homeowners did not gain, but the city has nice facilities, in fact, much nicer that the average inland home. I chose inland homes to be fair, since most city facilities are on inland lots.
Now, what really gets my goat! This misinformation dialog is crap, unadulterated crap. These statements you provide as examples as misinformation did not come out of the blue or picked out of a hat. They have a reference point, but obviously its not from your reference point. Some water users, as the above bloggers indicate, like to reference the final cost of water as $/gallon. And this provides a viewpoint, NOT misinformation.
When you say misinformation, I say blah, blah, blah and go into a slumber. Because its about a viewpoint, and you obviously do not like this viewpoint as in looking at total debt, but some professionals do, especially in assessing the best use of cash outlays/capital.
Note: this is a blog not a treatise, so the margin of error in my analysis may not be within +/- X%. And let's not forget, its sometimes written for entertainment value.
Remember, from your viewpoint, a condo vote was worth pursuing, more so than a single family home vote by design. Nice perspective!
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