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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

TCU Deception #11 - Using last year's budget numbers to argue this year's budget

Throughout the four-page mailer still being sent out to Troy residents, they back up their claim that the city is greedy and overspending with many facts and figures, including this:

"Instead of funding the library, Troy is wasting our money on pure luxuries and pet projects."
Then they first four items they list as proof are:
"-$9.4 million Transit Center to nowhere
-$0.8 million of undesignated park funds
-$2.0o million of undesignated City Hall grounds funds.
-$1.1 million of undesignated City Hall grounds funds."

Not True!
First of all, this old saw about the transit center. Say what you will about whether the U.S. is frighteningly behind the rest of the world when it comes to public transport and rail technology, but HINTING to the un-informed voter that the city is spending "$9.4 million" on the Transit Center is simply a flat-out lie. (If you can supply me with a kinder noun, let me know).

Here is the truth from the city's website:
In terms of funding for the Troy/Birmingham Intermodal Transit Facility, major funding for the project is provided by three federal grants awarded in 2010 totaling just over $10 million. The largest grant is $8,485,212 awarded under the 2010 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act’s (ARRA) High-Speed Intercity Passenger Rail Program. This grant is administered by the Federal Railway Administration (FRA) and the Michigan Department of Transportation.
The Michigan Department of Energy, Labor and Economic Growth awarded $250,000 to the City of Troy for LED lighting under an Energy Efficiency & Conservation LED Demonstration Grant. Also awarded was $1.3 million under the Fiscal Year 2010 U.S. House of Representatives Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Appropriations Bill. This earmark is administered by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA).
The City of Troy has allocated $1.3 million and the City of Birmingham has allocated $300,000 toward the Transit Center Project for a funding total of just over $11.6 million.
Source: http://troymi.gov/TransitCenter/JSMessage.pdf

It looks to me like the city worked their tails off for this and that it's something to be proud of. The city has 1.3 million invested and the state and federal government has put up over $9 million. When I tell people that they say, well fed money is our money too! So I ask, would you rather it go to Cleveland? or New York?

As for the next three items--$0.8 million of undesignated park funds, $2.0o million of undesignated City Hall grounds funds and $1.1 million of undesignated City Hall grounds funds--I was shocked when I read about this months ago, too. But look what I found out about our budget beginning this year, with the smallest effort on my part, by going to the city's online budget at http://troymi.gov/finance/Budget3yearDocument.pdf
Please know that this budget document utilizes all of the approximately $3.8 million that was reserved in non-essential Capital projects in order to delay lay-offs in the public safety area. This incorporates the trail system reserve of $2 million, park development reserve of $0.7 million and Civic Center reserve of $1.1 million.
So their TOP 4 examples are false!

These falsehoods coming into our mailboxes are from people who claim quite loudly that they are patriots.
What is patriotic about this--lying to guarantee the shuttering of our public library!?
I just don't understand...

Please vote YES on Proposal 1.

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