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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

No Soup for You Dunmore

I think the local news is almost at the "Dunmore Saturation" point, with the latest being that the bank (formerly) controlled by a major borough benefactor is not issuing a Tax Anticipation Note until a budget is passed.

Story link here.

If I lived in Dunmore this kind of thing would really, really upset me; however as a casual observer I find it more interesting than anything else. As I noted in a previous posting, Dunmore's political leadership is living in an almost constant state of denial, believing that somehow it's possible to have services like a full-time fire department, but yet refusing to accept the fiscal responsibility that goes along with it. Now we have council members talking about how some form of tax increase may be inevitable, which is the almost classic politician bait and switch ploy of "hey I didn't want to raise taxes, but at least we've managed to pair it down". Dunmore council must be taking cues from the Scranton School Board, which has the "thank us for keeping the tax increase to a minimum" act down pat.

Now politicians are expert at making this kind of thing seem very complicated, but in reality it's conceptually no different that any of us who run a household budget. We all have mandatory expenditures, we all have discretionary expenditures, and we all have to look at ways of saving money when costs go up faster than our income. What bothers me is that while we make the tough decisions for our home budgets, politicians seem to think they are above such nonsense when it comes to the public's money.

The Dunmore fairy tale continues: services can be maintained without raising taxes and there are no substance abusers needing treatment.

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