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Safety Levy Is On The Way!

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    Posted: Jan 23 2011 at 9:46am
From Saturday's retreat.....And while Laubach was against renewing the public safety levy, the other six members directed City Manager Judy Gilleland to work on developing a plan of action if a renewal were placed back on the ballots.
Gilleland said she will ask the union representatives from the fire and police departments to present their position on the levy at the first council work session set to begin at 5:30 p.m. Feb. 1.
Members plan to discuss in what form the possible tax levy may be presented to voters, what marketing may be done to promote it and when it may be placed on the ballots. Who's fooling who here Gilleland? You are trying to find any and all ways of revenue generation (fed money for Section 8 and HUD crap, taxing the hell out of us citizens) EXCEPT JOB CREATION.


Public Works Director Dave Duritsch told council only $800,000 is earmarked for road work in 2011, which is about 2.6 percent of the city’s entire budget. Out of a $30.5 million dollar budget, only $800,000 is allocated to roads. Pathetic!!!!


Duritsch said he plans to roll out a new program soon where residents could petition the city to complete work on their streets if 60 percent of all property owners on that street agree.
At least a portion of the work on those streets would be directly assessed to those property owners’ taxes. While residents may have interest and petition to have work done on their streets, the city still has to figure out a way to pay for it on the front end, which means collecting those assessments, Duritsch said. So, the property owner gets screwed again, right Dave? How do we win with this suggestion Davy Boy?

The city currently depends heavily upon state and federal incentives to fund road work, Duritsch said. He told council he would like to see the city designate at least $3 million a year to bring the city’s roads to a “good rating” within the next 20 years. Yeah, that's gonna happen.



Most members agreed IF the Cincinnati State project can be achieved, it could go a long way to help increase education and job opportunities in Middletown while potentially spurring more development. (if this event is that important, why was it handled with such a high financial risk and a dam handshake on the city's part)This deal could fall through at any given moment and the city is left the big loser.....again.

“It’s the one thing we have in the process that can bring jobs and turn around our downtown,” said Vice Mayor Anita Scott Jones. You hope Ms. Jones......you hope. Cross your fingers because the way it is being handled, there are no guarantees, just a "wing and a prayer".
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mike_Presta Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 23 2011 at 7:52pm

According to the newspaper:

Gilleland said she will ask the union representatives from the fire and police departments to present their position on the levy at the first council work session set to begin at 5:30 p.m. Feb. 1.

The last time fire and police “union representatives” spoke to council the great majority of them were from out of town. The majority of our police and firefighters are from out of town. Now, I am a usually a great supporter of our police and firefighters, but I will have great difficulty understanding if out-of-towners are invited to speak at this meeting while the citizens, who are the REAL stake holders and bill payers, are forced to remain silent.

Then City Hall cannot understand why they have an unfriendly image!!!

The newspaper continues:

Members plan to discuss in what form the possible tax levy may be presented to voters, what marketing may be done to promote it and when it may be placed on the ballots.

Now, I am not an expert on electioneering law, but are these not government employees being paid with taxpayers’ funds??? They certainly are acting legally, even if unintelligently, by making the business decision to ask for a tax increase at this time, but is it legal for them, as municipal employees, to MARKET or discuss marketing strategies as a body??? Where is the Law Director??? Is he simply waiting for ANOTHER lawsuit instead of advising these people of the law???  Isn't "marketing" just another word for "CAMPAIGNING"?

“Mulligan said he ... doesn’t believe they necessarily make the return on investment necessary to keep funding them.” …The Middletown Journal, January 30, 2012
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mike_Presta Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 23 2011 at 8:04pm
"Members also directed city staff to make improving Middletown’s image a priority in 2011."
 
I guess they figure that the best way to start is by RAISING taxes??? Confused
“Mulligan said he ... doesn’t believe they necessarily make the return on investment necessary to keep funding them.” …The Middletown Journal, January 30, 2012
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote middie83 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 23 2011 at 8:32pm
Why don't you tell us Mike, what you think a firefighter and cop should be paid. How would you go about things here? I would love to hear your SOLUTIONS.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mike_Presta Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 23 2011 at 9:38pm
Middie:
There is no easy answer to that.  You see, unlike many I am a strong backer of our police and firefighters and always have been.  Just ask your present and past chiefs.
Also unlike many, I believe that our police and firefighters are worth more than ZERO, which is what some of them will be getting if we cannot find a REAL solution to our city's budget problems.
 
One thing is certain:  This problem must be solved by Middletonians...and must involve all Middletonians, not just a chosen few.  It is not a question of how much public safety is worth.  It is a question of from where we can get the money to pay for it, and how much.
 
I will expand on this later.  This will take a lot of typing and I am not a good typist.
“Mulligan said he ... doesn’t believe they necessarily make the return on investment necessary to keep funding them.” …The Middletown Journal, January 30, 2012
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mike_Presta Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 23 2011 at 10:06pm
By the way, Middie, you are quick to question me on this one issue.  Have you questioned where all of the money raised by the safety levy to date has gone???
Have you questioned any of the questionable spending in other areas of the budget???
Have you ever wondered if staff has worked as hard finding money for public safety as they have for bike paths, PAC, historic facades, doggie parks, green spaces and the like???
Or are you a "one trick pony" and the heck with everything else???
“Mulligan said he ... doesn’t believe they necessarily make the return on investment necessary to keep funding them.” …The Middletown Journal, January 30, 2012
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mike_Presta Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 24 2011 at 2:00am

Middie:

You ask: “Why don't you tell us Mike, what you think a firefighter and cop should be paid.”

That is a loaded question. I will try to answer it, but before I do, let us examine it.

Why do you ask it? If you read and really try to understand my posts that seemed to provoke your questions, you will find that they actually had nothing to do with the worth of “a firefighter or cop”. (I’m guessing that you are a firefighter and not a “cop”.)

The points I raised were:

Council and the City Manager inviting out-towners to speak while forcing citizens of Middletown to remain silent. (I am guessing that you are an out-of-town resident, as well.)

The legalities of using a City Council meeting and city staff to plan a campaign for a tax levy.

The apparent dichotomy of improving the image of our City’s by raising taxes.

You see??? NOTHING about cutting the pay of police or firefighters--nothing at all!!!

However, you went on to add: “How would you go about things here? I would love to hear your SOLUTIONS.” So I will try to address this difficult issue.

But first, let’s get one thing straight: How much I think they should be paid; how much I think they are worth; none of that matters. I actually think that we need more police officers on the street, and have so stated. That doesn’t matter. What YOU think doesn’t matter either, if we do not have the money.

So, perhaps you (and most of Council, including those who are Republican-In-Name-Only tax-and-spenders) think just raising taxes is the ticket. Well, not everyone agrees. Many, including many mainstream economists, believe that raising taxes in a recession is the worst thing to do. When we tried it last time, the safety levy didn’t raise the money that was expected.

  • Does anyone really think having the HIGHEST payroll tax in the valley will bring new businesses knocking on our door???
  • Is reducing the take-home pay of our local wage-earners somehow likely to reduce crime??? 
  • Will reducing disposable income of all of our wage-earing residents "improve our city's image" and draw the new businesses necessary to make our City's economy grow???
  • Is that best for the long-term health of Middletown???

Well, some firefighters who live out of town may not care about any of that. As long as they get their raises until they retire in a few years, they don’t care about Middletown or its long-term health or its property values or its future, especially since they are not on the bottom of the seniority list. It won’t be them that gets laid off when the City runs out of money!!! But what about the younger firefighters and police--the ones who will be laid off when revenues decline? Some of them might actually even live in Middletown. What about them? Who is looking out for them???

So, my plan would be to first reduce all waste possible, no matter what department, no matter where the money comes from (federal, state, or local taxes). This includes unnecessary personnel. Redirect all time and effort wasted pursuing funds for unnecessary or frivolous items such as gateways, water features, historic facades, bike paths--you name it!!! If it isn’t an absolute necessity for public safety or infrastructure, forget about it!!! Then, redirect all of that effort into the pursuit of additional funds for public safety and infrastructure. Likewise, spend as much time and effort trying to shift money from unnecessary funds into funds accessible for public safety and infrastructure as we now do the other way around.

After that, reassess our budget. If honest efforts are made in the above directions, and we are still in budget trouble, then and only then hard choices must be made.

“Mulligan said he ... doesn’t believe they necessarily make the return on investment necessary to keep funding them.” …The Middletown Journal, January 30, 2012
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mike_Presta Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 24 2011 at 3:13am
Oh Middie, any idea what has happened to the roughly TEN MILLION DOLLARS collected from the current "Safety Levy" over the last 3+ years???  (Or don't YOU care???)
“Mulligan said he ... doesn’t believe they necessarily make the return on investment necessary to keep funding them.” …The Middletown Journal, January 30, 2012
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote middie83 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 24 2011 at 7:38pm
Mike: A lot of what you have to say I agree with. I understand that you want people that live within the city to have their say, which I don't disagree with. However, thats not to say that employees that live outside the city limits don't have great ideas and take great pride in the city that they work for.

I do care about the past public safety levy and I do feel that the city is going to have a hard time asking citizens for a renewal or increase especially after they told people that if passed there would be no reduction in services. And since we have seen positions in both organizations cut.

My biggest problem is that it seems a lot of people think Laubach is this golden child that he is far from in my opinion. (However, just pick up the Middletown Journal and you see either nothing about his problems he has his first year or you see just how awesome he is.) Laubach, has been reached out to by the unions to try and talk about these financial issues and coming up with solutions. Yet he ignores them or just doesn't talk to them at all. Must be too busy jumping on the coat tails of the new Governor.

I think we both will probably agree that our City Manager is not doing what is best for the city. And I will also agree with you that raising and raising taxes is not the answer. Waste does need to be cut, I just don't think there is any more to cut in public safety or you will start to see adverse affects.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote randy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 24 2011 at 10:08pm
Middie83:  you say in your above post
 
"My biggest problem is that it seems a lot of people think Laubach is this golden child that he is far from in my opinion. (However, just pick up the Middletown Journal and you see either nothing about his problems he has his first year or you see just how awesome he is.) Laubach, has been reached out to by the unions to try and talk about these financial issues and coming up with solutions. Yet he ignores them or just doesn't talk to them at all. Must be too busy jumping on the coat tails of the new Governor."
 
With a statement like like that I could only assume that you are a union member or friends with those that are? so are you telling us that unions reps have reached out to Mr Laubach to discuss financial issues (Since that council meeting back a few months ago) and he has ignored them and not returned calls? Do you know this to be a fact? I have no problem calling Josh, and asking if this is the case. And if so why?
 
But if he tells me that this is not the case and that no one has contacted him to discuss this issue, does that then mean that someone on the union side is not being honest here?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote VietVet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 25 2011 at 6:53am
middie83- I'm "middie66"

On the subject of unions......Mr. Laubach and most everyone else in town is aware that the town is in desperate financial straights. They are constantly looking to cut where they can, and have in the city building, although not enough as yet. According to city budget data, the highest costs to the city are in salaries/benefits costs/retirement costs, where, I believe, 75% of the budget is absorbed. IMO, Mr. Laubach went where no other councilperson had the nerve to go in questioning the costs of the salary/benefits packages of our union tied fire and police departments. As a result, an army of outside public union members flooded the council meeting demanding that Laubach "back off" looking in this area. IMO, Laubach has every right, on behalf of the city taxpayer, to look at this as a budget reduction and secondly, the outside union mob needed to mind their own business and stay out of the affairs of the unionized city of Middletown employees. We don't give a dam what outside union people have to say about the internal city/union negotiations and issues quite frankly.

I have worked for over 40 years for eight private companies, none of which were unionized. The companies ranged from 400 to over 100,000 worldwide. I was brought up in a union household with my grandfather working under the union as a four-high temper mill roller in West Processing at Armco for 46 years. I understand the need for a union in certain circumstances.....that being unrealistic management. The problem I see with unions is, that they start with good intentions...ie...improve working conditions. wages, benefits, representation against unfair labor practices, etc. However, I also know that unions, once the smoke has cleared, occasionally, start demanding what the company can't afford to give. They lose focus on the original intent of organizing and become greedy to the point of breaking the financial back of the employer. The company is buried financially trying to keep up with union demands and ends up going under. As I see it, the same is true with the city (and the Middletown schools) acting as the "company". They can't absorb the monetary demands for more money, bloated salaries, better benefits, better retirement costs, etc. The teacher's union costs are a huge portion of the school budget just as the fire/police union costs are with the city. Question for you, assuming you are in or on the side of the unions.....do the unions in this town understand and agree with the financial burdens placed on city coffers with their yearly negotiations? Do they know that the city can't afford some of these demands and actually needs to cut back in order to stay afloat? Would the union membership be willing to freeze pay and pay more on their benefits premiums through payroll deductions as we in the private sector have been doing for years? Or, is the union stance one of not giving an inch and think the city is feeding them a load of crap?

By the way, Laubach is hardly a "golden child" but he's a hell of alot closer to representing the people than any member of council right now. Ms. Scott-Jones shows signs of people representation also. The other five.....either have no clue nor care what the people want. They have an "anti-citizen" agenda. Laubach and Jones are the closest we have to what we need for the good of this city. JMO
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mike_Presta Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 25 2011 at 7:01am

Middie:

First, let me thank you for a civil and considerate response. That is not always the case on internet forums and I do realize that my posts can often be perceived as abrasive.

I did not mean to imply that our public safety “employees that live outside the city limits don't have great ideas and take great pride in the city that they work for”!!! Of course they do!!! And they certainly would not subject themselves to the personal risks required without also having a great deal of compassion for all of their fellow citizens, regardless of corporation lines. Perhaps I did not make myself clear. Please read it again:

“The last time fire and police “union representatives” spoke to council the great majority of them were from out of town. The majority of our police and firefighters are from out of town. Now, I am a usually a great supporter of our police and firefighters, but I will have great difficulty understanding if out-of-towners are invited to speak at this meeting while the citizens, who are the REAL stake holders and bill payers, are forced to remain silent.”

The “beef” that I had was not with who might speak. My problem was that it appeared that City Hall appears to be inviting out-of-towners to speak their mind on the issue, while at the same time purposefully denying our very citizens--including any public safety employees who might be Middletonians but not union reps--from a similar opportunity!!! I thought, and continue to think, that to be insulting and outrageous. I think that any public safety employees, especially those who may be Middletown residents, who may not agree 100% with their union representatives, or who may have other great ideas, should feel likewise.

Next, you mentioned:

“I do care about the past public safety levy and I do feel that the city is going to have a hard time asking citizens for a renewal or increase especially after they told people that if passed there would be no reduction in services. And since we have seen positions in both organizations cut.”

I believe that a large percentage of Middletonians share those sentiments. Even more importantly, in my view, is the fact that the current “public safety tax” was promised to be used for PUBLIC SAFETY ONLY!!! There has been some TEN MILLION DOLLARS of payroll tax since then. Now it seems as if no one can explain where all of this money went. Certainly anyone can understand why we may be hesitant to be “suckered in” again. Based on this alone, would YOU believe them this time???

Next you address issues with Mr. Laubach:

“My biggest problem is that it seems a lot of people think Laubach is this golden child that he is far from in my opinion. (However, just pick up the Middletown Journal and you see either nothing about his problems he has his first year or you see just how awesome he is.) Laubach, has been reached out to by the unions to try and talk about these financial issues and coming up with solutions. Yet he ignores them or just doesn't talk to them at all. Must be too busy jumping on the coat tails of the new Governor.”

I cannot speak to his relationship (or lack thereof) with the unions, or with our new governor. I simply am not privy to any information other than what I have seen on TVMiddletown, or read in the newspaper of in public documents. I have never seen him at any Republican functions. (The only ones that I have attended have been Butler County Central Committee meetings.) And believe me, I have NO influence with The Middletown Journal.

However, as far as his being a “golden child”, I can discuss that. Now I realize that I write more (and longer) posts here than any but the most rabid Middletown political “junkies” would read, but my writings are here for the record. I have supported, and OPPOSED, Mr. Laubach both here and in a few public meetings on an issue-by-issue basis, just as I have Mr. Smith!!! Some might say that Mr. Smith is the “golden boy” in the view of union members, but that has not stopped me from applauding him when I have thought him to be correct on unpopular stances, just as I have criticized Mr. Laubach on some popular stances.

While I may be too conservative for many folk’s taste, I assure you that I try my best to judge each issue on the merits, and I support anyone’s right to disagree. Strong, factual arguments have often swayed me.
You summarized:

“I think we both will probably agree that our City Manager is not doing what is best for the city. And I will also agree with you that raising and raising taxes is not the answer. Waste does need to be cut, I just don't think there is any more to cut in public safety or you will start to see adverse affects.”

You are correct!!! But this is just a re-statement of the problem. We cut all waste, and then we must begin making hard choices. It may be that we will have to begin trying to choose between tremendously difficult adverse effects.

Many Americans already are at that point. Many entire cities already are at that point.

If I had either an easy or a certain answer, I surely would have shared it long before now.

It would be good to be chosen king!!!  LOL LOL LOL

“Mulligan said he ... doesn’t believe they necessarily make the return on investment necessary to keep funding them.” …The Middletown Journal, January 30, 2012
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dead man walkin' Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 25 2011 at 7:27am

Maybe they should do like they want to do with the Censored street paving.

Maybe fire and cops should be free for the historic districs and then only the other streets that vote to pay for it should get it. Censored

"Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil" (Psalm 23)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote randy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 25 2011 at 10:42am

I just had an interesting phone call with Mr. Laubach, and he has told me that since that council meeting when all the union members showed no one has contacted him to discuss any issues.

 

He did goon to say that, at this point he couldn’t talk to any union members because they are getting ready to begin contract talks.

 

So there you have it Middie83, what do you say to this? Have union members/leaders contacted him or not and do you have any proof of this?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote middie83 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 26 2011 at 8:55am
@randy: Laubach was contacted I know for a fact multiple times prior to his "union" motion to discuss issues. And right after he made his motion he was contacted to discuss the issue and it wasn't until I believe a day before the council meeting he finally briefly returned a call. Phone records could be obtained to prove this. Union reps I think, (don't want to put words or actions on anyone,) contacted him to speak on the issue and explain their position but when he did not return email or phone calls the unions felt they needed to make a voice be heard.

One of my biggest problems I have is they keep brining up Arbitration on contract negotiations. It has been I believe over 10 years since a public safety contract went to arbitration. Thus the city has agreed to raises and then council has voted on said contracts and approved them. I'm sorry but if council (past members, some current) looked at the budget and thought, "this is just too much, the city can't afford these raises." Why in the world would you vote to approve it?? VOTE NO then!! Also @Viet, on your question of pay freezes and so forth. The city manager even admitted in that "union" council meeting the fire union came to her willing to talk about possible concessions and she passed that up because not all of the city's unions were on board. Sorry, but shame on her! Who knows what kind of agreement could have been made there and put the city that much closer to a balanced budget. But yet she will be one of the first people to make them look like the bad guys in all of this!

@Mike: I think the view of Mr. Smith being the Golden boy for the unions gets painted mainly due to the fact that he has done multiple ride alongs to try and understand what the jobs in public safety entail and he keeps a very open line of communication with both management and union reps. As well as we all know he is very Democratic and a lot of his votes and views during council meeting show that to the public. I as well don't always agree with him and have expressed this to him at times.

I think I'm to the point that I wish the state would come in and audit the books on this city. Like you said Mike, where did the money go??
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acclaro Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 26 2011 at 11:04am
Is someone missing the fact that the city's local audit group, Clarke and Co., audits the city's records annually, and the city has a sterling record associated with the audit? Why would the city audit Middletown's books when its outside auditor has a multiple decade track record of success with no problems? Someone better step forward and back up these allegations or loose all credibility with senseless allegations that encourage a "conspiracy" sterotype. If there is wrongdoing, report it.
 
As for Mr. Smith riding shotgun in ambulances, that's to position himself for a job and get in the good graces of those he rides, which should NOT be allowed by the fire chief or police chief. Let his resume get him a job, not being a shill for the union. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote VietVet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 26 2011 at 12:04pm
acclaro- You seem very defensive when discussing Clarke and Co. Because the city has been using Clarke. Shaeffer (sp?) and Co. for so long and because they are a local company and because there may be suspicion that the two are "happy together", isn't it a possibility that one could have thoughts that some impropriety (whether intentional or non-intentional) could occur since it is so convenient and cozy? Perhaps the auditor may overlook something that may be questioned by a truely outside, independent, non-biased intervention. I would be suspicious of this arrangement. No senseless conpiracies at this point but certainly appears to be a "close arrangement" for the city. I would suggest that council ask the city to use another auditor next time to "verify" the findings of Clarke. That would go a long way toward providing a feeling of confidence as to the validity of Clarke's performance, wouldn't it?

If Smith rides along, is the city liable for his safety while doing this? If so, doesn't that place the city in a precarious position to be sued by Smith if something should happen? What if he is shot while riding in a police cruiser? How fast will he be at the lawyer's office with a city lawsuit? OR.....does he sign a paper stating he will not sue the city during his ride-a-longs?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Paul Nagy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 26 2011 at 12:07pm
Acclaro,
       With the financial history of Middletown being what it is, It seems totally naive to suggest that because Clark, Schaffer and Hackett did the city audit for many years that there were no problems and the audit was at arms length.  Many of us never regarded them as "an outside auditor". As far as reporting allegations and wrongdoing isn't that also a bit naive when you are dealing with municipal government that has benn suspect in their financial dealings for decades? 
        Having an annual audit doesn't prove much. Now, if there was a professional investigative audit I think we would all feel much more secure.
        Thanks for the thoughtfulness of the post. I believe it raises a great subject for thought.
         Paul Nagy 
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Observer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 26 2011 at 1:34pm

I think it's very unlikely that a quality company like Clark, Schaffer and Hackett would purposefully look over an error during an audit,  Working for a small business I know that no client is worth the decades it takes to garner an excellent reputation, like C.S.H has.  I can only imagine the lawsuits, firings and financial damages that would result from purposefully overlooking errors.  As for unintentionally overlooking something...I would venture to say an out of town group would be equally likely to make the same potential unintentional error.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acclaro Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 26 2011 at 1:54pm
I concur wholeheartedly with Observer. The point was, the State should audit Middletown. Lets think through this logically. Why would the State invest mney in auditing the city of Middletown when its outsider auditor CERTIFIED their findings? It is nonsensical and would NEVER occur.
 
With all due respect to Mr. Nagy, Vet, others, these speculative allegations undermine credibility when many are attempting to gain it. Why would CSH put their reputation in harms' way? They simply would not do so.
 
Now, if the allegations the city promised funds collected for police and fire levy collection were distributed in part, to other departments, and the ballot langauge was broken, then that is a more serious matter, but has absolutely nothing to do with a State audit. Many confuse allegations of moving funds from the general fund to another as an accounting errorto be remedied by an audit. The State would not perform such an audit, and if there is an allegation movement took place that cannot be accounted, that's a different issue, which forensic accounting comes into play, an Enron deal.
 
I simply point out allegations, inneuendo, and suspicions do not outweigh facts. Facts are your friends, not speculation. Sometimes we cannot see the forest for the trees, and vice versa. The State would never do an audit based upon CSH's past certified audit IMHO.    
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote VietVet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 26 2011 at 2:16pm
Fair enough acclaro and observer......then given the information you have provided, how would one proceed to have the monies moved from one fund to the other within the city budget, if that is not the job of Clarke, S. and Hackett and not done with a state audit? Who would one contact to have a group come in to look at the city's books as to fund transfers and the whereabouts of some of this alledged missing money people keep talking about? IE...how do we get a fair evaluation of what Carolus is doing with all the money movement if we can't believe what comes out of city hall?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Paul Nagy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 26 2011 at 4:46pm
Acclaro/Observer,
        Again, I suggest you are naive and protest too much in the  direction of the great honesty we can expect from a government entity.. I'm thankful that people can look at a situation(s) and have two completely opposite views of it. That is a better check and balance system than we get from many governments and accountants.
        Due to another situation not related to the city I had occassion to look up the definition of audit in bookkeeping terms and it struck me funny saying, "2. An account as adjusted by auditors; final statement of account.".
         Paul Nagy
         
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acclaro Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 26 2011 at 5:40pm
Paul and Vet, I understand your premise. I would begin by getting all financial statements, simply look online. Then, study the ordinaces. Does it state that money taken from one account cannot be moved or transferred into another? Probably. Lets turn to salaries. Then the gas fund. If money is taken out of a fund, where does it go?  Accounting firms simply look to see if an entity complies to laws, and that funds match.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mike_Presta Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 27 2011 at 12:49am

Observer and Acclaro:

Give me a break!!! Of all people, I’m sure that you two have the acumen to follow some of this.

Please consider RESOLUTION NO. R2011-01 which was passed after a “second” reading in its “doctored” form just last week. Considering altered resolutions as a second reading” aside, you both should understand that money appropriated in one year does NOT have to be RE-appropriated for allegedly the same purpose the following year, nor does it need to be “TRANSFERRED” out of and right back into the VERY SAME ACCOUNT!!!

Now, several council members read this forum, and you guys know that, and I pointed this out very clearly before the FIRST reading (which led to its re-writing before the second reading, so you KNOW that they read it) and again before the second reading/vote. Yet no one questioned the need for the re-appropriation, nor the need for transferring the $1.27 million out of and right back into the very same account.

So, call it a conspiracy theory” or an allegation or innuendo or accusation or whatever, but it was voted upon and passed with absolutely NO question or discussion, so you can be certain that this “public business” was discussed and explained away beforehand and outside of legal open public meetings of City Council. You can also be certain that CS&H will never catch this and the City will once again pass” their audit” with flying colors.

Yet, we ALL (including you two) KNOW something fishy just happened!!!

Am I wrong???  If so, please explain!!!
“Mulligan said he ... doesn’t believe they necessarily make the return on investment necessary to keep funding them.” …The Middletown Journal, January 30, 2012
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acclaro Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jan 27 2011 at 6:49am
Mike, if you have read my posts, you know I am much aware of the shell games and shenigans that take place in the city, in the coirts in the city, and on council.
 
My point is this: you cannot say something is fishy andthen say its illegal without fact or specifics. You also proved my point. Council knew what they were doing, passed the resolurion, and CSH could not or would not find, an error in accountig, the money did not disappear did it? My point, to be succinct, was how then, with what you have stated, would the State come in, do an audit, and find wrongdoing? They would not.
 
You previously indicated you were given instrctions or advice from the State to look at filing civil remedies and it would cost money. Criminal wrongdoing would be done by a prosecutorat no cost. I'm just rrying to figure where there is this constant criminal or llegal wrongdoingI read about, but cannot find it.
 
I understand the funny money movement, the new resolutions, the bad deals, but moral and unethical actions do not make for criminal activities. What am I missing?  
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