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Saturday, March 26, 2011

Why there is no magic 1.7million "extra" in the city budget

Imagine this scenario in our own homes:

Wife: Good news, honey! We finally finished paying for Precious's braces, and we now have an extra $200 a month. I also brokered a deal to have my cell phone costs reimbursed through work since I use it so much on the road for clients. There's another $100/month! We have $300/MONTH TO SPEND ON SOMETHING FUN!

Husband: You would think, right? But actually, our budget payment for both electric and gas adjusted. We now owe $50 more on each per month because we had such a cold winter and used more energy than previous years. Gas is up .50 cents at the pump, so our monthly fuel allowance just rose another $50. I also just noticed that our adjustable rate mortgage ticked up 2 points. That's nearly $200 more a month right there we'll have to find.

Wife: Soo...wait...we saved $300 in one hand, but we're spending $350 more from the other??? That means we have a DEFICIT????

And that, my friends, is essentially why there is no $1.7million extra to put toward a library. The money is TECHNICALLY there is the first year of the three year budget. But projections show deficits for which that amount is needed to cover in the second year of the budget...starting July 1.

Moreover, property taxes just dropped they are predicted to do for several more years. That's LESS money in to cover more money out.

Would you go spend that 'found' money from your own household budget today if you knew you had shortfalls tomorrow??

If not, why would you ask your city to do the same?

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