Monday, June 18, 2012

Council's Budget and Finance approves the McGuire Budget ....

.....which does not reduce the Mayor's proposed tax increase. The committee voted unanimously for the McGuire substitute budget.

Duvall's no tax increase budget fails 2 for-13 against. Councilman Stein argues against the Duvall budget saying, "This essentially guts Metro government as we know it." Charlie Tygerd and Karren Bennett voted for the Duvall budget.

Tygerd's lesser tax increase budget fails. Other amendments that would shift money around all fail. 

Councilman Dominy spoke out in favor of the Tygerd budget saying it was "reasonable" compromise between Dean's 53-cent tax hike and Duvall's no tax increase budget. Tygard's proposed budget would eliminate the pay plan increase for Metro employees and reduce Metro schools' budget by $7.5 million.

Councilman Steve Glover had an amendment that would $8.6M from reserves, shaving 4.5 cents off the tax increase. "We can't mange the people's money better than they can," said Glover. This amendment faile3d 2-12-2.

Councilman Tgerd had an Amendment that would take a million dollars from the Hospital Authority and $85,400 away from the Human Relations Commission to keep the libraries open on Friday. It failed 1-12-3. I would like to see the Human Relations Commission completely abolished. Too bad this failed.

Councilman Mitchell's had an amendment that would take $28K from Partnership 2020 and give it to the election commission to open more early voting sites. It failed 3-12-1.

It is over folks. I expect the Duvall alternative to fail  and to get about seven votes and then for the council to overwhelming pass the McGuire budget. 

Usually, it would be pointless to vote against the McGuire budget, because if a majority abstain or vote no, the mayors budget automatically passes. However, due to the fact that the Mayors budget as originally proposed included a General Services District tax increase which would also be 53 cents, if the Mayors budget passes, that would trigger a referendum. The Council should vote "no" on the McGuire budget and let the Mayor's budget go to a referendum.  

I don't think that will happen, but while their is usually no logic for voting "no," this time there is. A "no" vote is a vote for a public referendum.  

In other B & F action,  the committee voted against Councilman Todd's bill to eliminate the council lifetime health insurance benefit.

I attended the Budget and Finance Committee meeting but got there late. Some of the above information was gathered from tweets from

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