Doug Palmer’s administration finally presented the budget for the current, 7 month old, fiscal year to city council last night. Banking on the completion and final approvals for the sale of the outlying water distribution system to reduce the city’s debt, the new budget calls for nine cents per $100 of assessed value increase in property taxes.
Council and citizens alike were warned of dire consequences if the sale of the outside portions of the water utility was somehow thwarted. Taxes will go up an additional $1.00 per $100 of assessed value claims acting business administrator Dennis Gonzalez in the Trentonian.
There is no doubt that the City of Trenton is in dire financial consequences. And it has been for several years.
But Palmer, at his quixotic best has pointed the finger at the State for not continually increasing aid to the capital city and not readily allowing the state parking lots to be developed for ratables. It never seemed to occur to the Man of Hiltonia or Dennis “Sancho Panza” Gonzalez to cut back city spending on non-essentials before going to personnel layoffs and asset sell offs to balance the budget.
In the Times article on the budget presentation, reporter Meir Rinde quotes Palmer’s admission that he’s never approached the problem from a long-term perspective:
"In the past, we've had Houdini-like, one-shot deals," to balance budgets, Palmer said. "They're certainly running out."
That’s right, Doug. And you were called on that fact each and every time you pulled one of those tricks out of your sleeve. But you wouldn’t listen.
Now that you may be nearing the end of your reign, you are scrambling to find ways escape for the fiscal house of cards you built collapses on you.
Too late my friend, it’s coming down and it’s coming down fast.