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  • Budget woes...

    I'm posting this here, because I feel it's important for not only officers to respond, but the public we serve as well. This could very well happen in YOUR community.


    I was informed today of a manditory meeting this Thursday at 0800, involving all the officers of my department, my Chief, office personnel and the Mayor.

    The topic to be discusssed is the 2002-2003 budget. Simply put, there isn't one.

    I am told to expect the following:

    NO raises
    NO new patrol cars
    FEW if ANY repairs to existing patrol cars
    NO $$$ for training
    NO overtime
    CUTbacks on part-time officers
    DECREASED coverage from existing officers, meaning an INCREASE in crime


    The above stems from Tennessee's inability to pass a balanced budget. So...in its infinite wisdom, the governor has vowed to withold, from counties/municipalities, normal state monies collected from sales taxes. My county is expected to lose several million dollars in state funding it has always counted on.

    So.....we'll see what Thursday brings. I'm not expecting good news at all.
    "When you guys get home and face an anti-war protester, look him in the eyes and shake his hand. Then, wink at his girlfriend, because she knows she's dating a *****."
    -Commanding General, 1st Marine Division

  • #2
    Sounds like you in New Orleans. People want more protection, more police, less crime, better recruits. better standards, just no one wants to pay for them.
    Stay safe and watch your back. Survived Katrina. Now a Official member of the Chocolate City Police.

    Comment


    • #3
      Wisconsin had a similar problem on the state level, though not nearly as bad as what you've described for TN. Locally we were told to expect many problems, but all I've noticed is a cut in training budget. I was supposed to go to 1week FTO school and 2 schools put on by the FBI this year, neither will happen. On a whole our SO has been fine.

      There has been talk amongst Madison PD that they may see layoffs, though that talk is nearly all but dead now.

      My bro's PD, on the other hand, seems to "find" extra money in their budget. In the last two years they've found between 12-20G's each year. One year they got a Sage SL-6 and a bunch of other less lethal toys. This past year they got Surefire's for their shotguns/carbines and new StreetGear unis.

      SHEEEEEEEESHHHH....must be NICE!
      Nobody ever wants to have to fight, but its a darn good idea for someone to know how.

      Comment


      • #4
        Our local sheriff's department just had to trim the budget because of the elimination of a utility tax (the opponents of which said the money was being wasted, and the tax wasn't needed - emergency services, youth programs, all a waste of money).

        So, to that end, 29 positions within the Sheriff's Department are being eliminated, and several programs are being cancelled. To add to that, California's small deficit ( a mere 20 billion or so) is resulting in 500,000 more dollars being cut, and the elimination of 7 deputy positions... Doh!
        Concerning the difference between man and the jackass: some observers hold that there isn't any. But this wrongs the jackass.
        -Mark Twain

        Comment


        • #5
          At least Patrol won't be cut. My personal opinion is that the county has plenty of money, they just mis-spend it. The Planning Department gets way, way too much as do programs for people too lazy to work (Pacific Mall inhabitants and their ilk).

          The county has a $30mil surplus and the utility tax represented a single-digit percentage of the budget. The county could also make a mint by selling off some of the parks. There is a 300-acre park which is usually closed to public use and is in the perfect location for some houses and maybe a golf course. More and more land is being bought and converted to government ownership, thus taking it off the tax rolls.

          They had a chance to get Home Depot in Mid-County, but would not allow them in, so now a forward-thinking incorporated city in the county will reap the windfall.
          Government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem. - Ronald Reagan

          I don't think It'll happen in the US because we don't trust our government. We are a country of skeptics, raised by skeptics, founded by skeptics. - Amaroq

          Comment


          • #6
            Shooter,

            It sounds to me like the governor is trying to manufacture reasons for a state income tax.

            Why don't they do away with Tencare instead? Never mind, I know the answer.
            "Integrity is like virginity. Once it's lost, you can't get it back." --drunkhunter

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by ateamer:
              At least Patrol won't be cut. My personal opinion is that the county has plenty of money, they just mis-spend it. The Planning Department gets way, way too much as do programs for people too lazy to work (Pacific Mall inhabitants and their ilk).

              The county has a $30mil surplus and the utility tax represented a single-digit percentage of the budget. The county could also make a mint by selling off some of the parks. There is a 300-acre park which is usually closed to public use and is in the perfect location for some houses and maybe a golf course. More and more land is being bought and converted to government ownership, thus taking it off the tax rolls.

              They had a chance to get Home Depot in Mid-County, but would not allow them in, so now a forward-thinking incorporated city in the county will reap the windfall.
              The Planning Department, I don't believe I've ever heard a good word spoken about them.

              Haha, hey, Santa Cruz, along with San Francisco is supposed to be ranked among the top ten meanest cities in regards to the homeless, that is the city, and not the county though...
              Concerning the difference between man and the jackass: some observers hold that there isn't any. But this wrongs the jackass.
              -Mark Twain

              Comment


              • #8
                We have it bad, but not nearly as bad as others around us.

                They are getting NO raises, no gear, have hiring freezes except in "critical" positions...etc.

                We are getting a 2 1/2% raise, and our mid year "bonus" which none of them get anyway (a weeks pay.)

                We get no equipment, and only a minor repair budget, but family plan insurance went up.

                And to beat all, a town beside me had the GALL to put in the paper (in cohorts with the reporter I'm sure) "However this years budget does bring good news for city employees. The town will now be paying the medical retirement for retired employees with 25 years of service to the city, whereas before this was only done for employees with 30 years of service."



                Yeah...

                "good news" huh?

                They accidentally forgot to mention to the public NO raises, NO more paid overtime (comp only) and NO training budget. Also, the CHIEF of that agency only has about 18 years with that agency and will retire (age out) within 2 years-and the NEXT longest tenure after him is 12 years and that Lieutenant has cancer. The average years of service with that agency on the patrol division is about 5 years-I'm SUUUUUUUUUUUREEEEEEE that the police officers consider the new 25 year medical insurance benefit is "good news."

                Give me a freaking break.

                The only secure job around here is for spin doctors.
                People have more fun than anybody.

                Comment


                • #9
                  The good times come, the good times go. Sorry your area is in a downturn. We on the other hand just got in the last of our new fleet of cars & have an 8% pay raise in the new budget. Well, as my old dog says, "Sometimes the bone, sometimes the gravy." Hang in there. It has to get better.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    drunkhunter...

                    The last info I had on TennCare was that there were 10,000+ cases of NON-residents receiving TennCare payments, and that over $1,000,000 had been paid out to DEAD folks.

                    Go figure....
                    "When you guys get home and face an anti-war protester, look him in the eyes and shake his hand. Then, wink at his girlfriend, because she knows she's dating a *****."
                    -Commanding General, 1st Marine Division

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Meeting results:

                      IF the state doesn't pass a balanced budget by midnight Sunday, the state will shut down.

                      Imagine what's going to happen when(IF?) people DON'T get their state retirement checks, welfare checks, etc next week.

                      The ONLY state-funded services that won't be cut are prison guards. The THP(highway patrol) WILL NOT be operational. I-40's gonna be a 'free fire zone' for speeders.

                      At the local level, emergency services will continue to function 'as is' for at least 3 months. After that, lay-offs will be discussed. Currently, non-essential services will be cut. Things such as the City Library and Recreations Department will have funding stopped.

                      I asked about needed repairs to patrol cars(burnt up motors, non-functional light bars, etc) and was told 'Until it STOPS, it doesn't get any $$$ thrown at it.'

                      BTW...the 'state' itself is in a pickle over this. It seems there is NO contingency plan(legal or otherwise) for such an occurance.

                      Possible 'solutions' include:

                      * a 4.5% flat state income tax(no tax on groceries or first $30K of family income)
                      * a 6% flat state income tax(doing away with sales tax altogether, except for 2.75% local sales tax)
                      * DOGS(decrease of government subsidies)
                      * doing nothing at all

                      So...there we are.....
                      "When you guys get home and face an anti-war protester, look him in the eyes and shake his hand. Then, wink at his girlfriend, because she knows she's dating a *****."
                      -Commanding General, 1st Marine Division

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        When Minnesota was about to shut down, for similar reasons, 'The Gov' aka 'The Body' decided to step in and force the legislature to remain in session until they figured out a budget. That was kind of cool because it avoided a shut down, but who knows what it did to their decision making process. Maybe it turned out better because all parties were forced to work together in "crunch" time.
                        On the wings of a dove
                        Let's roll for justice
                        Let's roll for truth
                        Let's not let our children grow up
                        Fearful in their youth -- Neil Young

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Shooter,

                          I had seen numbers similar to those about TennCare. I also hear that the care given is terrible as well.
                          "Integrity is like virginity. Once it's lost, you can't get it back." --drunkhunter

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Shooter, CA went through this in the 1980's. I remember when the state had to issue IOU's in lieu of paychecks, because of standoff between the Legislature and then-Gov. Deukmejian!

                            "Duke" (a Republican) refused to sign any budget legislation that had unacceptable (to him) expenditures, and the Democratic-controlled Legislature (headed by "Slick" Willie Brown, now the mayor of San Francisco) wasn't about to do away with their pork-barrel spending habits. So they basically had a "staring contest" until the current budget ran out!

                            Banks accepted the IOU's as paychecks, but after a while threatened do discontinue doing so (they were basically giving the state an interest-free loan). It wasn't a good time to be a CHP officer, or any employee of the state!

                            Fortunately the outcry of the public forced the Legislature and the Governor to "kiss and make up" and get a budget passed.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              We have elections coming up in August. I don't see the Governor being able to keep ANYone around(the candidates WILL go home to campaign) after Sunday if they don't pass a budget.
                              "When you guys get home and face an anti-war protester, look him in the eyes and shake his hand. Then, wink at his girlfriend, because she knows she's dating a *****."
                              -Commanding General, 1st Marine Division

                              Comment

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