RACINE — Year after year, the City of Racine has kicked off the budget process having to figure out how to fill the gap between its growing expenses and flat-lined revenues.
And year after year, the city’s administration and City Council have used a variety of “tools” to fill that gap, including the controversial changes to the city employee and retirees’ health plans last fall, raising fees for some services, removing services from the tax levy and billing for them separately and using balance reserves.
This year Kathleen Fischer, interim City Administrator and Assistant Finance Director, warned the council that, “this year is very, very different.”
“There are not a lot of tools left in the toolbox,” she said.
Fischer estimated the city is facing a $4.5 to $5.5 million shortfall. One potential solution, which the City Council approved on Tuesday, was to ask taxpayers whether they’d support a referendum for an additional $3.5 million to help cover the cost of retirees’ healthcare.
The other, Fischer told the council, is that she has asked all city department heads to work out what a 5% budget cut could mean for their department and what a 10% budget cut could mean for their department. Making the books balance next year is going to require some reorganization and realignment of departments, employees and services. It’s also highly probable it will require some cuts.
"Why does this keep happening?" Because Butterball and his cronies piss away our tax dollars much more quickly than they can collect them. (When will Butterball pay his fair share in property taxes?) Cronies like Shyster Letteney throw away our tax dollars on high-priced, out-of-town attorneys to cover their crimes. (When will Letteney bathe?) These pigs oink away our tax dollars and then cry "poor." Stop living like kings, you swine.
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