Sunday, May 23, 2010

Safety Net Issue - Open Forum - When is Enough Enough... Opinion Piece

Opinion Piece:

I find the fact that the Ulster County (U.C.) Legislature voted down a change (a desired monetary burden shift from K-NY to the County of Ulster) in the way the Safty Net is funded - when it comes to the City of Kingston - is shocking (at best) and disgraceful (at worst). 

The inequity in the way the Safety Net (in regard to K-NY / UC-NY) is currently funded - is glaring - and how anyone [particularly our political representatives (A lot of U.C. Legislatures may be losing their positions soon, due to structural changes - so (listen up) - a position on the UC Legislature is bound to become much more competitive...!)] could "not" see "that" is beyond me.

So, now that the City of Kingston is reputedly going to sue (I'm not sure this is definite yet.) the County of Ulster --- regarding the funding of the Safety Net --- I say hurrah (!) - because it seems to me as if K-NY taxpayers have been getting fed the sludge (in many ways; this being just one...) at the bottom of  the sewage pipes (blocked, apparently, all over town, to boot!) for way too long.

1.  An inequity (again, these are my opinions...) in the way the Safety net is funded.

2.  A U.C. Department of Social Services that apparently doesn't even know the correct address of the people that it is providing services for...  [Another illegitimate price-tag thus far pushed off on K-NY taxpayers...]

3.  Property tax assessments (courtesty of GAR Associates) out of whack all over the place (as demonstrated by the number of Kingston taxpayers that sucessfully contested their property tax assessments last year, and won...)].

4.  Over 40% of K-NY properties (not-for-profits, religious and non) reputedly off (or partially off) the tax roles; and...

5.  Some questionable budgetary issues ["Sunshine" anyone?] in regard to some [my opinons; my opinions; my opinions...] of  the above [I'm specifically addressing #4]

How did the Safety Net issue get voted on so quickly - when most issues [from stop signs and street lights to bagging leaves and cats...] seem to take forever?  I thought the public was going to have a chance to submit [This (at the U.C. level...) certainly deserved an open forum!] some collective [Did I miss something?] imput (?!?)

Why wouldn't U.C. Executive Michael Hein (as reputedly suggested by the assistant K-NY Corporation Council) allow an open meeting - with the U.C. Department of Social Services Commissioner - in attendance?  Is this true?  [I would like to hear Executive Hein's response to that...]

Alderman Hayes Clement has reputedly suggested that the City of Kingston host an open forum on this issue [Kudos!] - and I, for one [I know I'm not alone on this...] would like to see this become a reality.

Surely the taxpayers in the City of Kingston have some rights? 

Or are they [K-NY taxpayers] just here [Things are seemingly very backwards of late...] to clean the parks - sweep the streets - and otherwise take over functions that are the City and / or County's [At least this is how it worked where I came from...] responsibility?

We aren't supposed to "hurt the feelings of" people that are receiving services...


Not MY intent.

And probably NOT ["Red herring" anyone?] the intent of most concerned parties.

The thing is...

You cannot continue to chip away at a rock without that rock becoming a pile of pebbles and eventually --- DUST.

2 + 2 does not equal five.

And sooner or later the taxpayers [My "best guess..."] are going to say [ whether through the voting process; through relocation or some other means (?)] "NO MORE".


"Kingston alderman wants public forum on welfare funding"; Paul Kirby; "Daily Freeman"; 5/23/2010;

"kingston progressive 'ULSTER COUNTY SAFETY NET'":

"'Thinking twice Public Welfare Charges' Kingston Citizens":

Previous posts (this blog) and community meetings.  For Example:

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