Do We Need To Speak Louder To Our Electeds As To What Most Important Issues?
With $423 million dollars of General Fund expenditures earmarked to be spent from the County annual budget of $1.43 billion for fiscal year 2015-2016, there is a battle brewing over ideology of how to prioritize many of those millions of taxpayer dollars. Do the Supervisors prioritize in a pragmatic manner and pay down pension obligations and repair roads that will cost a lot more if not repaired now, or do they opt to spend in an ideological manner to ostensibly improve people’s lives in Sonoma County? Supervisors need to maintain core functions such as public safety, street and road maintenance, sanitation and water service. True enough. But the County Supervisors also have the ear of many that want to improve the lives of those that are disadvantaged in some way by spending more on homeless services, subsidizing affordable housing, raising the minimum wage, creating a separate coroner’s office from the Sheriff’s office and installing a system of auditing the decisions made by the Sheriff’s department, and by creating preschool programs for all 3-4 year olds in the County. Although I am certain you share my thoughts that these are all admirable and desirable, pragmatism rules in my “real world”. If the Supes are not helping create jobs and opportunities for those firms that are “job creators”, I do not think they should be diverting funds to those causes until they have taken care of the core responsibilities of the County services. Many of the areas the County will be debating expenditures; have long been the domain of Federal and State programs. We will see spirited discussions about this next week.
How can we affect the outcome? By talking to the Supes (that is what you pay me for!). Also, by letting your voice be heard-I suggest you access the Press Democrat poll at the end of this article and take the 1 minute poll that will let the Supes know how thousands of people feel about how their tax monies will be spent. link
My opinion, which I am entitled to write here in this little “soapbox” column, is that the Supervisors are trying to be too many things to too many special interest groups at the expense of keeping up with their core responsibilities. Now that Measure A has failed, I want to see the Supervisors concentrate on spending more on roads and less on homelessness and minimum wage increases. As for increasing their staff by expanding fire services in the County-Nope! As far as hiring folks to administer to a separate County Coroner’s office and an auditor system to rule over the Sheriff’s Department-I say NOPE! As to subsidizing affordable housing-I cautiously say “I AM WILLING TO LET YOU TRY SPENDING A LITTLE TO SEE IF YOU CAN HELP JUMPSTART THE HOUSING MARKET”. As for universal preschool care-I say NICE IDEA BUT NOPE!. As for increasing the minimum wage for thousands of workers-I SAY NICE IDEA BUT NOPE! As for increasing pension obligation payments and increasing funds for road repair – I SAY LOUDLY AND CLEARLY -HELL YES!
So you know how I took the survey, now you can be counted too. Click on the link above and let your voice be heard!
You can say what you like by taking the poll. The other fun thing is that you can see how the polling progress is going-what are the other voters thinking?
Enjoy being heard!
That’s All Folks!