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The Saratogian Newsroom blog, complete with thoughts and commentary from our newsroom staff and regular posts on happenings around town.

Thursday, November 19


When I talked to Commissioner of Finance Kenneth Ivins Jr. this morning, after he presented proposed amendments to the 2010 operating budget, he said he was very comfortable with both his original proposal and his newest amendment.

His confidence, it seems comes from the deep-seated belief that the tax payer is on his side. He did win re-election by a comfortable margin over an opponent who ran on a platform of doing things differently, so his confidence is not rooted in thin air.

But there are a lot of other skeptics out there, including skeptics who also won election or re-election by a comfortable margin. When one of these two proposals goes into law, lets hope that Ivins is able to convert the skeptics, otherwise we'll only be looking at more cuts in May, should it look like parking revenue will not materialize.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Relying on money for paid parking, which isn't even in place yet is a disaster waiting to happen. Your are correct Andrew, we will go through this again in May. What a terrible way to run a city. Every two years we have a crisis. Weren't we going bankrupt building a water system a couple years ago? Why is it again that Home Depot couldn't build within the City limits? Why did we opt out of the sales tax formula? Now union contracts are bankrupting the city? What will be the next crisis that this wonderful city government system will fail to address? Where has all the money gone from all of the new hotels/offices/retail that has been built downtown in the last ten years? We are expanding the City center, that sees ever increasing attendance, and yet the City coffers are empty? What are we telling city employees who have been hired in the last three years? They have been threatened with layoffs three times in eighteen months. Great way to motivate your employees. Thats not a money issue or government issue, thats just common decency. The people of Saratoga have paid for what they have, a beautiful and safe city. And yes you do pay a premium (although average salaries are not out of line with other cities int he area). The businessmen and women who have revitalized this city from the woes of the 1970's should be commended. The City government system that makes this city such a joke is abysmal. Saratoga's greatness is rooted in the terrific men and women who work for the city and those small business owners to go out on a limb to create jobs in our downtown area. Politicians who keep behaving like five little kings will be sorry when you can't get quality people to work for the city any more, when clean and safe conditions deteriorate, and businesses decide its better to do business in Wilton or anywhere else that doesn't have a circus tent for a city government. Do we have any plan for the future, any at all?

November 20, 2009 at 8:45 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Time to cut and cut deep.Bring in private contractors to plow the streets.Mayor Jennings has been doing it for years in Albany.Wirth was elected on a pledge of low tax increases,so cut the budget and give Rick a good head start.Paid parking is never going to fly cut cut cut.Get the police sargents out from behind the desks and let them get some fresh air walking the streets.Stop the SSFD from chasing ambulances around the city.

November 20, 2009 at 9:35 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

anon 8:45,your statements fit any city town or village in the US,we're not alone!

November 20, 2009 at 11:40 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

anrew,before this years election the Dpw spent $30,000 to pave Nelson Ave between Webster street and crescent Ave.,now National grid is now tearing this road up,sadly dpw knew this and spent the money and paved it anyways WHY?

November 21, 2009 at 10:37 AM 
Blogger Andrew J. Bernstein said...

anon 10:37 a.m.: The section of Nelson Avenue currently torn up by National Grid has not yet been repaved. The section further south, which has been repaved, saw utility work conducted earlier this year.

November 21, 2009 at 11:04 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Stop the SSFD from chasing ambulances around the city".

The SSFD response to any EMS call in the city now includes at least 1fully trained NYS Certified Paramedic to apply all Advanced Life Support (ALS) medical care required. SSFD will be on scene in 4-6 minutes. SEMS may not be available; may have to come across town; or may not have a paramedic on scene.

So how much is it worth it to you to have an SSFD paramedic applying ALS care to you, your family or your neighbors in the first moments of any medical emergency?

I'd say that having the SSFD paramedic response is priceless!!

And oh yes, the city budget is about to eliminate more than one-quarter of the SSFD paramedics; each having been trained at city expense for $70,000 each($500,000).

You and your family members should think of that the first time that SSFD is responding to your medical emaergency with no paramedic on scene and has to wait for another agency to provide ALS to you.

November 23, 2009 at 10:53 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The more i hear, the more i think the SSFD has done a much better job at negotiating and giving concessions on their contract.

The SSPD has been a joke.

Every time i hear someone say "wait until you need them" i laugh. I have needed them, and they were late and not any help at all.

A 12 guage is better than 7 cops on patrol. It will never take 20 minutes to get across town.

November 23, 2009 at 3:16 PM 

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