Saturday, May 26, 2012

Budget Meeting - What Happened 5/22/12?

I waited until today to post my comments because I wanted to see when the minutes and the minutes packet would be posted on the city's web site.  Usually it is done within 2 days of a meeting.  As of this morning they have not been posted.

There were some interesting items brought up at the meeting and folks need to read and hear the info.

One thing that I found strange was that at the beginning of the meeting the city manager handed out line item budgets for each department.  (What is in the agenda packet for each department are not line item budgets).  She then told the council members that they would not be discussing them and if anybody had any questions they could contact her individually. 

Well, Council member Sawyer questioned the overtime expenditures for some of the departments.  Not because he felt they were unjustified, just wanted some clarification.  That's normal.  The third time he asked, the repartee between him and the city manager got quite contentious.  She informed him he could contact her later and they would discuss.  He then made some comment about would that be a back room discussion. 

So, where are these line item budgets?  Why aren't they or the minutes package on line?    Why couldn't council members discuss line items in open session?  Why would they have to contact the city manager away from the meeting?  You can (or should be able to hear) the back and forth on this on the audio version of the meeting.

Historical date:  Jeff Vaught actually expressed concern about something that I agree with.  He was concerned about the city continuing to use Lotus Notes as the basis for various databases and other computer functions.  Definitely something that needs to be researched further.