Letters to the Editor

Budget 'trickery'?

What kind of trickery is the Fresno City Council up to now? We all received a public notice regarding the upcoming water, sewer and garbage collection rate increases. You are asked to send a letter, within precisely defined parameters, if you are opposed to these rate increases.

This is all done allegedly to meet the requirements of Proposition 218 (our right to vote on taxes). However, if we take a minute and read Proposition 218 we might discover that the assumed purpose of these rate increases does not need to go through this process.

It appears that rate setting for sewer, water and garbage collection is exempt from the Proposition 218 process. So why are we going through this? Could it be that all the other "stuff" in this proposal would not be approved unless Proposition 218 is followed?

This includes items like landscape and island maintenance, and even inter-budget transfers between departments (such as Public Works "paying" the Fire Department $1.1 million per year to inspect fire hydrants and the $1 million "paid" to Public Works yearly for city garbage trucks to use city streets). Are we being fooled into accepting these exorbitant rate increases?

Bill Richards

Fresno

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