3 years late, Measure O numbers on line – – sort of

As promised bycity of eureka the Eureka City Finance Director Paul Rodrigues, the “transparent” information about Measure O spending has been added to the City’s website.  Thank you Mr. Rodrigues.  It’s a little later than originally promised in 2010, but we are very happy to get the information about where the sales tax money from Eureka is being spent.  You told us that it was being spent predominantly on public safety.  Sure enough, the report your department put out echoes those statements.  You even included pie charts, which show the huge amount of money that has been “allocated to public safety”.

Even more amazing, is that when you get down to the numbers the report clearly states that the Police Department received and USED “37% of all available Tax proceeds”.  According to the report the Fire Department received and USED “38% of all available Tax proceeds”.  In fact, according to the report,  Measure O will have brought in $11.6 million and public safety was allocated $8.7 million. Wow. Wow. Wow.  We encourage Examiner readers to look at this report.  It can be found at the below link.  After getting to the City’s website just go to the bottom of the page and click on the “2014 TUT” link.   But please, don’t stop there.  We didn’t.

http://ci.eureka.ca.gov/depts/finance/reports.asp

With these seemingly amazing revelations about Measure O expenditures, we almost did a double take.  It just didn’t sit right.  So we went pouring through the City’s budget reports that are a available online.  It turns out that in the budget documents there is a portion entitled “Section F-Expenditures By Fund”.  This report is put out by the Finance Department, so it should verify that Police and Fire were allocated these millions of dollars of funds, and show that those funds were spent, right?  Wrong.

According to this document Police and Fire spent $1,373,655 in Measure O funds for the 2011/12 FY.  In the same year, under the heading “Community Development”, $2,052,714 was spent on “OTHER FINANCING USES”.  For 2012/13, Police and Fire are estimated to have used $505,456.  “OTHER FINANCING USES” estimated spending was $3,416,544.  For the adopted budget of 2013/14 Police and Fire were allotted $427,129 while those “OTHER FINANCING USES” were allotted $3,562,873.  Check our numbers by going to Section F on the following link:

http://ci.eureka.ca.gov/depts/finance/report_pages/budget_fy_13_14.asp

Actually, even more amazing is the reporting by each department.  The Police Department budget report reads that they are only allotted $77,164 this budget year.  The Fire Department budget report doesn’t even give a figure of what they’re allotted.

Examiner staff aren’t accountants, obviously.  But it seems that something strange is going on with the way this money is being handled.  We’re sure that Mr. Rodrigues will again have some way of excusing what seems to be either blatant mismanagement of this tax fund, or incompetent reporting processes.  The question remains, has Measure O lived up to the promises of transparency and funding of public safety?  Or is this money a slush fund for infrastructure or pet projects?o no!

If it was actually intended for infrastructure, great!  The city needs clean water and sewage treatment, good roads, clean parks, etc.  But if it was for use in areas like infrastructure for the City, the ballot measure and the City public servants should have been clear, so that voters could decide.  The way it was handled, many voters basically had the fear of anarchy on the streets without this tax. Really, it looks like the city just didn’t want to tighten it’s belt or make tough decisions so used public safety and street sweepers as a red herring.

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52 thoughts on “3 years late, Measure O numbers on line – – sort of

  1. I doubt Paul will respond to this one. This is ugly stuff. Either incompetant reporting in his department or complete corruption. Maybe both.

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  2. Regrettably… No on “O”.

    It could be said this is a City of Eureka issue and as a Fortunan I should butt out. But this is a sales tax; nearly all of us in the county do a good deal of buying in Eureka. So most of us in this county share in this exercise in public safety fantasy.

    As Measure “O” is probably written for the November ballot it will continue to promise Safety and deliver Christmas Presents in City Hall to anywhere but. I agree with the notion that if the city wants a general increase in sales tax for general fund purposes then that is what they should ask for. To advertise they want to clean up and make Eureka safer when that is not really the focus of the tax is Fraud.

    Unless the City of Eureka changes substantially the wording of the “Return of Measure O” it should be voted down.

    “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.”

    I already feel badly enough about getting fooled once.

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  3. Mola, As many of us expected, the city is hiding the truth of measure “O” in hard to understand figures. Why did we have to wait this long to see a clearer picture of “O” spending? Thank you Tuluwat for a story that needed to be told. I hope the TS picks up on this. Tuluwat, please forward a copy of your findings to the TS. THANKS TO TULUWAT AND NO THANKS TO THE CITY. Too bad, because with or without the tax, EPD and EFD are left holding an ever shrinking pile of BADLY NEEDED MONEY.

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  4. Maybe our recently departed short term City Manager from Stockton (what was his name anyway?) got a good look at the books and decided he didn’t want to participate.

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  5. “BitsCraig” is that the City manger before last your referring to? How much was that final salary?

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  6. You got one thing right, that is you are not accountants and you do not understand how the monies are being spent. Its also plain to see that you don’t want any answers, that you just want to politicize this, because the finance guy for the city was dumbass enough for him to implore you to call or even come by so that he could answer your questions in detail.

    I went to the city’s website, and it there are measure o spending documents and it appears that whatever you are calling other financing uses are transfers from one part of the city’s books to the part where police and fire department costs are paid for.
    One question for you Tuluwat: when did you stop beating your kids, wife, parents and all other family members. That is your scattershot approach to this. You dumbasses can’t cry if money was spent on the zoo or parks when the ballot measure arguments for measure 0 specifically mentions that.

    So, yeah, you obviously don’t understand the city’s books, in fact you admit it, but it doesn’t stop you from making baseless accusations and asking loaded questions.

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  7. to be fair, public finance is complicated. i do love it though when people say “I’m not an accountant, but something doesn’t look right.” It is a beautiful statement, calling the numbers into question while at the same time excusing yourself if they are correct. A more true statement might be, “I don’t know what I’m looking at, but I want there to be a problem.”

    How can you possibly know that something doesn’t look right if you don’t know what you are looking at.

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  8. yoDa:

    Enlighten us then. The TE made specific references to budget items. Perhaps you can explain how those specific references were misinterpreted.

    You can skip the stuff about the beatings; this is a Family Internet Site after all.

    I don’t expect to see a return of Mr. Rodrigues; not because he necessarily tried to deceive anyone (perhaps he did, I’m not an accountant either, just a poor dumb voting citizen who’s views obviously don’t count) but because there is no way he can come out ahead.

    If Mr. Rodrigues tells the “real” truth he is going to get a pounding from his bosses. If he continues to toe the line he has set out then he’s going to continue to get a bitch slapping from the TE and it’s commentators.

    I kind of feel sorry for Mr. Rodrigues, even though he never did answer any of my own very specific questions.

    But I do believe it is the City’s responsibility, not TE’s, to make these accounting issues comprehensible and credible for the citizenry. If the TE (admittedly also just poor dumb voting citizens who’s views obviously don’t count) has to do it instead; well that’s too bad if the picture distorts a bit.

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  9. So it sounds like there are two basic questions here: (1) what does “OTHER FINANCING USES” include? (2) If that doesn’t include a whole lot of stuff related to public safety, then how do the numbers in the budget report jibe with the numbers in the city’s Measure O pie chart?

    Which leaves me with this question for the Tuluwat Examiner — have you asked Mr. Rodrigues these questions before posting this piece, and Mr. Rodriguez refused to answer? Or is this strictly a hit and run operation where you publish allegations/insinuations first, and then the target only gets respond after the fact?

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  10. Green Bat Winged Anonymous:

    You are improving (assuming you are the same one); I withdraw my threat to tell on you to your mother that you are using her computer again.

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  11. The green bat wing anonymous scoffs at us mere citizen tax payers, daring to question the Cities overly obscure accounting. Until there’s a transparent and complete audit, that’s made public, we all need to be asking more questions.

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  12. How’s about this solution? The City publishes how much money was SPENT from Measure O on public safety, and detail exactly what the money was spent on. For example, in 2011 $X was spent on salaries, $X was spent on gas for the cars, $X was spent on office supplies, and so on. That would be transparent and would answer a lot of questions the TE has asked.

    Maybe that’s just too simple and straightforward.

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  13. Hmmm why dont you go to.the website, I found a spending plan listed that does just that for the last year as well as the budget for the current year.

    It shows exactly how much went to police salaries and remember, by their own admission the TE aren’t accountants.

    They sure want to fling out the accusations though.

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  14. MOLA leaves out a third option, primarily that the city finance director answered the questions truthfully and the TE simply twists and distorts and looks for another accusation to hurl. Case in point, TE railed against an existing committee doing the audit of the Measure O spending, spending multiple posts decrying this as something scandalous.

    When TE’s accusation was refuted, that the ordinance makes a provision for the very thing he was calling out as wrong doing, he makes a very specious and ridiculous accusation that the language of the ordinance had been changed.

    OH REALLY, well if that was really the case then you’ve got the city dead to rights!

    Oops a quick check of the smart voter guide and the league of women voters archives show the language as being there. Changed my ass.

    No wonder the city official doesn’t want to answer any more questions.

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  15. These negative posts are really a mental bummer for the citizens of Eureka, if you have questions call City Hall ask for Paul and have your questions answered.

    Twice a month any citizen can attend the City Council meeting and express your concerns, all you have to do is show up. The meetings are held first and third Tuesday of every month, there is a meeting tomorrow.

    If a person thinks that they did not get the value they expected from Measure O, than go in front of the City Council and speak out.

    If you have a political platform that you think is better than the current direction, bring it forward and let the voters decide.

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  16. Large Marge:

    All good suggestions.

    Sorry the citizenry of Eureka a getting a collective bummer.

    How do you know the people grousing here aren’t from Eureka? I know I don’t live in Eureka (I just pay the sales tax without even having a chance to vote on it) but perhaps all the others do live in your fair and collectively bummered city?

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  17. “The green bat wing anonymous scoffs at us mere citizen tax payers, daring to question the Cities overly obscure accounting. Until there’s a transparent and complete audit, that’s made public, we all need to be asking more questions.”

    Baloney. I’m scoffing at the “staff” of the Tulawat Examiner, and their blatant demagoguery, performed while clumsily attempting to wear the mantle of journalism. But a journalist doesn’t go “gosh these numbers don’t seem to add up to me…but, shucks, I’m not an accountant…so I guess I’ll just go ahead and make vague, cynical insinuations of mismanagement and incompetence.” A demagogue, on the other hand, will do just that.

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  18. YoDa, the wise old sage has spoken. Interesting YoDa would pick a total fantasy movie using smoke and mirrors to make the story seem real. Come up with your side of the real picture and maybe it holdwater and maybe it doesn’t. First push the finance director on the where ALL the ‘O’ money was used.

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  19. The question remains…is this money a slush fund for infrastructure or pet projects?

    Is Wendy Testaburger using your lunch money to buy heroin? Probably not — but how can we know? I don’t want my lunch money going to drugs! Who’s taking these drugs. What would be the point? I’m just asking questions!

    http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Just_asking_questions

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  20. Anonymous 8:14-

    Can you point to an itemized accounting of Measure O on the city’s website (include the link please), that documents how the money was spent (not allocated) for public safety? Or are you just here to shoot the messenger?

    Thanks

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  21. Of course you better get TE’s take on things, because, after all

    “Examiner staff aren’t accountants, obviously”

    Obviously.

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  22. I’m not an accountant either, but I didn’t have any trouble finding that same link, yoDA. For those too lazy to click, or who have trouble understanding spreadsheets, here’s the summary of “Measure O” funded expenditures for Fiscal Year 2012/2013:

    Police $647,448*

    Prob Orient Police $184,892

    Public Safety Communications $113,300

    Fire Prevention $80,816

    Fire Suppression $973,585

    Fire Volunteer Program $24,197

    Emergency Operation Center $120

    Fire Truck / Engine Replacement, Fire Dept & City Hall Roof Projects
    $207,578

    Fire Truck / Engine Replacement, Fire Dept & City Hall Roof Projects
    29,934

    New Fire Truck – FEMA match $587,064

    Street Sweeping Program (reinstate street sweeper position) $58,569

    Facility / Park Maintenance $93,626

    Enhanced Building and Code Enforcement $17,138

    Transfer to General Fund Assigned Reserves $977,250

    TOTAL: $ 3,995,517

    (Note: this is a simplified version using the subtotals for each category, additional details — for example salaries and benefits vs equipment, etc. — is included in the document that can be found at the above link cited by “YoDA”.)

    So let’s see what we’ve got: Salaries and benefits for police, fire, and emergency dispatcher services, equipment for both departments, new fire trucks, etc. — Sure looks like a lot of public safety stuff to me.

    Of course I’m just a humble taxpayer looking at these documents, like the TE “staff” I’m not an accountant. So perhaps someone else can explain to me where the “scandal” is here, because I’m not seeing it. Then again, I guess I haven’t been fitted with the special partisan blinders that the TE “staff” appear to have strapped on so tight.

    —————————————————————————-
    *Note: The subtotal for “Police” appear to be listed incorrectly on the document on the city’s webpage as $527,626, but add up the categories under “Police” and it looks like the correct number is $647,448. Looks like a simple cell formula error in the spreadsheet, but it’s only present in that one subtotal. The grand total appears to be calculated from the individual items, not the subtotals, so the individual items do add up to the grand total ($3,995,517).

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  23. yoDa-

    Cool. Thanks for the info. That wasn’t there earlier when I commented. You must work for the City!

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  24. And here is what is budgeted for FY 2013/2014:

    http://ci.eureka.ca.gov/civica/filebank/blobdload.asp?BlobID=9428

    >>>>>Note: This corresponds to the first pie chart in the first link provided in the above post by the Tulawat Examiner. <<<<<<

    As you'll see, out of about $4 million in Measure O Funds, here's how it is being spent:

    Police Services: $1,167,890

    Problem Oriented Policing: $279,110

    Public Safety Communications $ 308,233

    Fire Prevention $133,857

    Fire Suppression $609,596

    Fire Volunteer Program $59,215

    Emergency Operation Center $9,657

    LERS Retirement Costs:
    Police Services $77,164
    Fire Suppression $350,015

    Fire Truck / Engine Replacement: Debt Service $82,334

    Fire Truck / Engine Replacement: Debt Service $3,614

    New Fire Truck – FEMA match $49,879

    Street Sweeping Program (reinstate street sweeper position) 58,569

    Facility/Park Maintenance: $117,400

    Enhanced Building and Code Enforcement $95,000

    Neighborhood Oriented Policing Officer (not hired yet) $97,000

    Fire Department Roof Repair Debt Service $57,500

    Transfer to General Fund Assigned Reserves $ 519,967

    TOTAL: $4,076,000

    (Note: Again, this is a simplified version using the subtotals for each category. Additional details — for example salaries and benefits vs equipment, etc. — are included in the document that can be found at the above link.)

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  25. Anonymous 10:11-

    You should also thank yoDa. That commenter certainly has the inside scoop on info that wasn’t previously released prior to the above post. At least, that’s what this “humble taxpayer” was unable to find on the city’s website earlier.

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  26. MOLA:42, watchman, Exfill, Hmm, Anony, and Tulawat Examiner “staff,”

    What say you now?

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  27. I’m glad that the city provided this document today after this post. I find it funny that the date at the bottom shows that this was produced on 02/10/14. Why wasn’t it put out then? Also, the numbers still seem a little funny. You check the math, but in actual money spent for 2012/13 it looks like a lot less than the “79% allotted”. Still begs the question, why hasn’t an independent commission been formed? Or an independent audit? It shouldn’t take some anonymous nameless blog to get the city staff to give us the info.

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  28. That’s why I keep checkin this blog all the time. They certainly know how to get a reaction. Weather its the Zoo, epic, the Bass camp or the City of Eureka.
    anonymous 10:21 Thanks for all the Info, lots to look over.
    Big Ups to this blog for asking tough questions and taken the hate’n

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  29. Also, the numbers still seem a little funny. You check the math, but in actual money spent for 2012/13 it looks like a lot less than the “79% allotted”.

    If you’re talking about the 79% listed as “Public Safety” in the pie chart, that relates to FY 2013/2014, not FY 2012/2013. Fiscal year 2013/2014 is the FY that we’re in right now, so we won’t have final “actual” numbers for that until at least sometime after the end of this fiscal year, on June 30th.

    Is that what you were talking about, or did I misunderstand your point?

    Anyway, they did not include a pie chart for FY 2012/2013, which I think would have been helpful, since that’s the most recent year for which we have final “actual” figures for.

    Of course you could create your own pie chart for 2012/2013 from the figures listed for that year (in the document “YoDA” linked to, and which I summarized just a little way below that on this thread), but in order to compare your home-made 2012/2013 pie chart to the City’s 2013/2014 pie chart (and to the other pie chart that includes the cumulative exenditures for very year since “Measure O” was adopted), you’d have to make sure you assigned the figures to the categories the same way as the city did.

    Anyway, it looks to me like the bottom line is that “Measure O” funds are, by and large, being used pretty much the way voters were led to believe they would be used — with the vast majority of those funds being used for public safety expenditures, with a modest portion for parks and recreation and other neighborhood programs, and a few other items, like street sweeping.

    Once again, it looks like the propaganda that the Tulawat Examiner’s “staff” has spewed has turned out to be, as ol’ Billy Shake-a-spear put it, nothing but “a tale, told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.”

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  30. It is, nevertheless, curious to read criticisms of the only local source to publish this information that, to be sure, would be difficult for most local citizens to sort through.

    Please keep looking and publishing!

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  31. The TE published misinformation. Which a number of the early commenters swallowed, hook, line and sinker. MOLA: 42, I’m looking at you (Oh, O.K. I can’t stay mad at you with that cute picture of a dog…but seriously, are you ready to start applying a bit more skepticism instead of just accepting the TE’s claims at face value?)

    It was the commenters, including “YoDA” and myself, who set the record straight. So, yeah, thanks TE for publishing your misleading, uninformed, sloppily reported accusations, so that others would have to come clean up your mess for you by correcting them.

    No real journalistic outfit covered this “story” because there is no “story” there, other than “tax intended to cover public safety and other community needs is used to cover public safety and other community needs.” So there was certainly a story here that the TE could have covered, the only problems being that (1) it doesn’t serve the TE’s propaganda purposes, and (2) most people wouldn’t find it particularly newsworthy.

    But neither of those were a problem for the TE, since they just cooked up some bullshit rhetoric about “blatant mismanagement,” “incompetence,” and “slush funds,” which would certainly be newsworthy if true — but since not true, all that rhetoric adds up to nothing more than typical sleazy political mudslinging.

    How ridiculous that the TE tries to associate itself with Bret Harte. Harte was a journalist, and yes, he was quite a polemicist, but he didn’t just make shit up, and then hide behind some weak-ass “just asking questions” dodge.

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  32. By Anonymous’s own figures (admittedly by quick calculation using fingers and toes) nearly one million of the four million was either not spent on public safety or not spent at all (so called deferred spending).

    We can do this all night… I got figures that say this, you’ve got figures that say that. Since none of us appear to be accountants we’re all just lurching in the dark.

    I’ll repeat what I said before… It is the City of Eureka’s obligation to make things clear even to us ignorant, unschooled and unwashed citizens what is really going on with the money.

    And since the city of Eureka sold Measure “O” to the citizenry as a public safety initiative what is here is less than what has been promised to the public. I’m talking about what was promised by the city, not the actual wording of the initiative.

    Full disclosure does not just mean, “Look at our fancy foot-work while we sell you this bill of goods.” Nor does it mean, “See this column of numbers, go figure out for yourselves what it all means.”

    Full disclosure means a straight forward non-patronizing presentation of what is the real situation. We are not accountants, true. We should not have to be accountants to understand the business of city governance.

    Sorry Anonymous, you did ask for a response. Good night.

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  33. Anonymous 12:28:

    Glad you like the picture of the dog. I’m rather fond of it myself.

    I don’t find myself in total agreement with the tone the Tuluwat Examiner uses when making it’s arguments. It’s too strident and anxious to make a “splash.” But I take things as they come. No doubt I have glaring faults of my own.

    I do believe the TE did (and still does) ask legitimate questions that require legitimate answers. That I do agree with.

    As for the “no real journalistic outfit” polemic. I might remind Anonymous that Arkley basically said the same thing about the LoCO when it first came out (“Hank Sims is in no way a real journalist”).

    I don’t know where this all is going Anonymous. In the end, I am just a spectator just like you.

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  34. “And since the city of Eureka sold Measure “O” to the citizenry as a public safety initiative what is here is less than what has been promised to the public. I’m talking about what was promised by the city, not the actual wording of the initiative.”

    Nonsense. This was only a few years ago and I remember it quite well. Measure O was “sold” to the citizenry as mostly (but not entirely) for public safety, and it’s been used mostly (but not entirely) for public safety. This idea that it was all supposed to be for public safety and nothing else — that is just plain false. And yes, the ballot question was perfectly clear that some of the funds would be used for things other than public safety — and voters read that, and a majority of them voted for it. If you voted for something without reading the question — or for some reason you decided to put your vague sense of “what the city promised” ahead of the actual words that appeared in front of you on the ballot — then that’s your mistake. So you can go ahead and be mad at yourself for not paying attention back then, and for getting your information from highly biased, totally unreliable sources like the TE now, but in both cases you’ve got no one but yourself to blame.

    Meanwhile, it’s quite clear that Measure O funds have been spent mostly on police and fire services, just as the voters expected.

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  35. Ya people, don’t believe your lyin’ eyes! Nothing to see here. Just listen to angry blowhard green bat, and just move along.
    Don’t stop and actually use your memory of the measure O campaign. Just believe what the bat fool says.
    Don’t factor in the chronically under staffed police dept into your equation. Most of all DON’T question the math!
    This bat must be directly feeding from the measure O trough.

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  36. Anonymous 1:55

    So, “it’s quite clear that Measure O funds have been spent on…..”. That’s debatable. What isn’t in question, is that this info put forth by the city was only after numerous posts by the TE. That’s not being transparent on the cities part. It shouldn’t take over 3 years to get info that was promised. That’s just bad business and you know it.

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  37. oh, boo hoo. It wasn’t on the web. I see the dumbass finance director put his email and phone number and practically begged you trolls to even visit him in person so he could take the proper time to answer your questions.

    The info was there and available. It might not have been on the web, so TE is to be commended for lighting that fire, but to say the information wasn’t available is wrong.

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  38. I said: “it’s quite clear that Measure O funds have been spent mostly on police and fire services…”

    yoDA’s momma said: “That’s debatable.”

    It is? How so? On what would you base your argument that it hasn’t been spent mostly on police and fire services?

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  39. “Ya people, don’t believe your lyin’ eyes! …Don’t stop and actually use your memory of the measure O campaign.

    Fortunately your apparently faulty or selective memory and your lyin’ eyes aren’t the only information available. Just read the ballot language that voters read when they voted on this question — it is quite clear that part of the funds would be spent on things other than public safety. You can pretend otherwise, but basically you’re denying an easily documented, demonstrable fact.

    ” Most of all DON’T question the math!”

    When did I say that? Question away! Go ahead and show me where the math doesn’t add up. I checked the math and found one incorrect subtotal, and pointed it out.

    This bat must be directly feeding from the measure O trough.

    Ah into the ad hominem gutter, refuge of those who lack any decent argument.

    My apologies for introducing facts and logic into a crowd that apparently prefers bullshit that fits with their biases and serves their political goals, to good information that doesn’t.

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  40. 9:54

    Any comment on transparency? City Manager Dave Tyson in the run up to the election spoke about an independent oversight committee. “Tyson said the formation of a committee to track Measure O funds would follow the same process as any other committee. Recommendations would come through the mayor, subject to approval by the council.”

    I still haven’t seen you comment on the lack of citizen oversight. All you seem to do is comment on how stupid the TE and public are for even questioning the city about how tax dollars are spent. Should we just blindly trust government officials who promise information then act offended when people ask for it? That might work for Yoda, who seems to be an insider, but what about the rest of us?

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  41. From the City Attorneys analysis of Measure O:

    “Measure O contains fiscal accountability provisions, which include the creation by the City Council of a citizen’s oversight committee to annually review the City’s expenditure of the revenues generated by the tax.”

    From the ballot argument signed by Leonard, Jones, Atkins and Jager:

    “Accountability: A citizen’s oversight committee will annually review the City’s expenditure of these revenue generated by the tax; and the City post to their website, a detailed spending plan and an annual report from the City of revenues collected and how the funds have been spent.”

    Green Bat Guy anonymous and Yoda, What say YOU now?

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  42. You may have a good point about oversight, but I don’t know enough about the oversight to comment. Unlike the TE, I don’t make claims I can’t substantiate.

    Of course I never said it was “stupid” for anyone to question how city tax dollars are spent. I don’t even think it was “stupid” the way the TE “staff” approached this issue by making unfounded accusations and then expecting others to clear them up. Cynical, unethical, manipulative, dishonest, demagogic, yes. Stupid? No.

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  43. You don’t know enough about the oversight? Neither do I, that’s the point! We were told that a new oversight committee would be formed to audit the expenditures and that info would be posted on the city’ s website. 10:45, you quoted smartvoter earlier so you can clearly see the info put out by the city. Neither of those claims were followed through. Now, over 3 years later, info has been put on the city’s website. I won’t blame or ‘demagogue’ those who might be a little skeptical or cynical about this brand new information. Will you? It seems like you are???

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  44. As was pointed out earlier, the ordinance provided for the oversight committee to be the already existing finance advisory committee. So go read the ordinance, “And”.

    And again, as someone pointed out yesterday, if the language was changed after the fact, then you and the TE have them dead to rights, and can sue the bejeepers out of the city, but you don’t so you just cry that the language was changed, which of course it wasn’t.

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  45. yoDa 1:22:

    Wait a minute. I don’t think anyone claimed they changed the wording of the ballot AFTER the vote (might have missed that one).

    My problem was they failed to talk about the “fine print” when selling Measure O to the electorate. You don’t seem to have a problem with that. Fine. It’s all just my opinion. Everything I write here is just my opinion. Nothing more.

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  46. Well, M42, your comprehension is lacking. TE had a problem with an existing committee being the oversight committee for the new sales tax and bitched about it. When it was pointed out it was right there in the ordinance (hardly “fine print”) he tried to say the language was added after the fact.

    And if YOU, Mola are going to keep talking about the ballot arguments, then you need to check yourself and admit that the very arguments for the ballot measure specifically mention parks and (gasp) the ZOO in addition to funding public safety, which, according to the trusty dusty link I posted, it does, and quite handily too.

    Again, it is important to note,

    “Examiner staff aren’t accountants, obviously”

    Obviously

    Like

  47. YoDa 8:46:

    The conversation has become circular and nasty. I’m not sure what I did to you, but I am sorry if it was something so bad to get you this angry.

    You may have the honor of possession of the battle field if that makes you happy. I see no point in continuing with you.

    Like

  48. Bravo to the TE for being the ONLY local source among a county of professional journalists that bothered to follow up on this Measure…years later! And it appears the city had expected it to stay that way and were unprepared.

    This process is standard in our culture, especially Humboldt County.

    Irregularities are identified, accusations are made, scandal is suspected, and true or not, authoritative voices rush to condemn and refocus each step of inquiry, in this case, before any interest expands that could lead to credible public demands for an audit or an oversight committee.

    I remember the hostility from “interested parties” when anyone dared to question the excesses of the development, timber or pulp industries. More recently, the Balloon Tract…are their Dioxins, PCB’s, heavy metals? How much? The hostility and resistance from public officials and Arkley apologists intensified with each discovery.

    For those that were here at the time Measure “O” was being “sold” every council member that got near a microphone cried about the needs of our understaffed, underpaid police. It’s no secret that voters are easily tricked and have been fooled for so long that the vast majority always abstains.

    How many residents know what “Assigned Reserves” are from Measure “O”? How many millions of dollars are there today, and is that what should be there? Too many residents remember voting for higher property taxes for K-12…it passed and 3 neighborhood schools were shuttered.

    Hire an independent auditor to review Measure “O” funds and form the Oversight Committee as promised.

    Like

  49. Pointy Purple Bat Winged Anonymous:

    Thank you for introducing the long view to this little talk we are having. The perspective is perhaps overdue in this discussion.

    Like

  50. Pingback: Tuluwat Examiner | Measure Q Campaign kick-off today. Will it be contested?

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