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Archive for May 21st, 2009

Tea Partiers to Demand Sane Budget from City

This is getting interesting.

Some of the local Tea Party folks are planning to march on the Charlotte city council meeting Tuesday night to demand a responsible budget. They are off to a good start, but more could be done.

For one, taxpayers need to understand why the City Manager’s office ballooned from 169 employees and a $12m. budget in 2007 to 220 employees and a $18m. budget in 2009. Ditto “business support services” from $15m. and 191 employees to $18m. and 234 employees.

The city should also zero out the $520K spent on “business investment grants,” de-fund Center City Partner’s $125K Vision 2020 plan, nix $200K for the CIAA basketball tourney, $125K for the Charlotte Regional Partnership, and cut $100K from other memberships and lobbies.

Now that would be responsible.

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Clodfelter Poised to Kill Annexation Reform

Daren Bakst has the gory details here, but suffice it to say state Sen. Dan Clodfelter is about to deliver a major victory to the forces of the status quo.

My take-away from this is that it is completely and utterly pointless to attempt to pass legislation which empowers citizens at the expense of North Carolina politicians, insiders, and bureaucrats. Such a thing simply will not be permitted. Understand that you paid for the lobbying muscle the League of Municipalities used against you.

And there is nothing you can do about it. Yet.

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Jill Swain is Nuts

Where has the mayor of Huntersville been all these years? It is far, far too late to pop up and decry the inevitable funding cuts to local arts groups, cuts mandated by a conscious policy of spending millions of public dollars on new performance spaces.

For at least five years it has been obvious that to simply assume, as local leaders did, that arts groups and the ASC could always raise more money next year was fraught with peril and financially unsound. Yet this was done in order to make the numbers “work” for speculative, publicly subsidized ventures like the Wachovia Arts Tower. Some of us pointed out this was a bad idea then.

Now that reality has hit, Swain tries to up the ante with a ridiculous argument that Government cuts to arts groups threaten our area economy. No. Bad fiscal policy does. If Mayor Swain wants to join the fight against that, there is plenty of work to do. And all of us are half-crazed for trying such a thing, so she’d fit right in.

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May 2009
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