Wednesday, June 9, 2010

George Hartzman Letter to the Editor, May 9, 2010

"Proposed county budget follows reckless course

Let’s not spend more than we make on what we don’t need.

Was Chairman Skip Alston “100 percent” certain there would not be a tax increase because Guilford County’s proposed 2010-11 budget intends to spend more than $34 million more than the county expects to receive in revenue after spending $43 million more than it received in 2009-10?

The proposed spending is projected to drain the county’s reserves to statutory minimums, leaving no wiggle room for error in 2011-12, when direct injections and ancillary economic benefits of most federal stimulus dollars evaporate.

At what point do those who chose to remove our reserve cushion tip the county into a distressed financial position?

Could borrowing and spending more than we make for what we “want” eventually limit access to credit or reserves when we may “need” them?

Let’s not emulate the profligacy of the federal government.

Let’s not be tempted by the temporary benefits of fiscal malpractice and unsustainable financial irresponsibility.

Let’s not betray our community’s future for a more pleasant present at our children’s expense.

Let’s act in the best long-term interests of Guilford County instead of some commissioners’ short-term desire to retain power through the next election at any cost."

George Hartzman
Greensboro News and Record, Sunday, May 9, 2010

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