IS IT TRUE the saga of raising tax rate on the citizens of Evansville and Vanderburgh County is one of those sad things that happens when property values do not increase to go along with the general cost of living?…expenses tend to rise in the Midwest along with the rest of the country with the odd exception of housing?…that is why a flat percentage tax fuels the coffers of government in areas where housing values increase without needing to raise the rates?…over a ten year period of a moderate inflation on goods and services of say 2.5% leads to an overall cost of living or business operation of roughly 30%?…when the municipal employees are granted annual increases based on cost of living statistics, and the assets used to run a government increase the sobering truth is that a $300 Million budget in 2007 would naturally turn into a $390 Million budget in 2017?.IS IT TRUE in a situation where incomes and properties are not going up for the bulk of the taxpayers the City or County will not see their tax revenues increase over the same period of time?…the result is a need to raise taxes collected by the 30% increase in operating expenses just to keep doing the same things?…the City of Evansville and Vanderburgh County are both caught between a rock and a hard place due to the phenomena of rising prices in a stagnant economy?IS IT TRUE in most situations where one is not getting any raises the correct action would be to cut back on consumption?…the City of Evansville in particular has not only kept up the spending, they have doubled down on fun and games under the irrational assumption that the fun and games would make the cash register ring?…the reality could not have been further from the truth?…with the combination of the Ford Center ($127 Million), the Doubletree Hotel ($21 Million), and the Indiana University Medical School ($57 Million), the trustees of the fair City of Evansville have borrowed over $205 Million that consume interest payments of over $10 Million per year?…not a one of these expensive baubles has come even close to paying for itself and the end is nowhere in sight?…all of this spending excludes bike paths, ball fields, penguin exhibits, and that shiny new home for a couple of jaguars all of which adds nearly another $50 Million to the party tab?…the future may well have been mortgaged to the fun and games obsession of the present?IS IT TRUE the crime statistics for large American cities were just released and contrary to popular belief Chicago is not the murder capital of America?…that distinction goes to St. Louis where 59.6 people out of every 100,000 are murdered in any given year?…Chicago is a distant 8th place on the murder capital list?…some Indiana towns did make the list?…Indianapolis comes in at #21 with a murder rate of 17.6 per 100,000 while Fort Wayne debuts on the murder capital list at #24 at 16.5 out of 100,000?…little Evansville by the Ohio fares much better than any of them with a murder rate of 7.5 per 100,000?…the article went on to state that the driving force behind this crime spree in major US cities is the resurgence of heroin as the drug of choice for opiate users, many of whom are in the Midwest?…a couple of years ago Indiana had more prescriptions for opiates than it had people?…when the feds cracked down on the legal distribution of opiates, the heroin scourge that had been underground for many years came roaring back?…this is a tragedy that is just beginning to get traction so expect things in the mega cities to get worse before they get better?IS IT TRUE a coffee shop in San Francisco now has a robot that will take your coffee order, prepare it for you, and put it into a cup for 40 cents less than Starbucks charges?…this innovation uses 30 year old robotic technology that was pioneered by the auto industry?…it was the excessive wage demands of people who think they deserve $15 per hour for pouring coffee in a cup that inspired this adaption of robotic technology?…someday soon the day of the barista will end due to yet another machine that does a better job for a better price than a human being?IS IT TRUE that around 75 City of Evansville employees are being sued for unpaid medical bills? …we hear that the City Controller had to find about $4 million dollars to pay towards past medical bills? …the City still owes many more million of dollars on unpaid medical bills? …we wonder where the City Controller got the $4 million dollars to pay the past unpaid City employees medical bills?IS IT TRUE we would like members of City Council to ask Finance Chairman Dan McGinn to give them a detailed recap concerning the real status of 2016 and 2017 unpaid employees medical bills? …we also would like for him to explain where he going to get the money to make unpaid medical bills current?FOOTNOTE: Todays “Readers Poll” question is: Do you feel that our elected officials should force the State to include Ivy Tech in the IU-Evansville Medical school project?FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmail
By Donald WittkowskiOn Jan. 20, officers from the Ocean City Police Department will protect their chief – the Commander in Chief.Fourteen local officers will participate in a historic event by providing security during the Washington, D.C., parade up Pennsylvania Avenue for President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration.Ocean City Police Capt. Jay Prettyman said the officers will help out with crowd control and traffic direction for the parade route.“They certainly will enjoy going down there to be part of the inauguration, which is a historic event,” Prettyman said. “They’re going to do everything that they’re asked.”Ocean City Police Capt. Jay PrettymanThe officers will leave for Washington on Jan. 18 and are scheduled to receive special training the following day at the National Guard Armory to prepare them for their duties on Jan. 20. Prettyman said they are scheduled to report for duty at 4 a.m. on inauguration day and will work between 16 and 18 hours helping out with the parade. They will return to Ocean City on Jan. 21.This will be the third time that the Ocean City Police Department has been part of the security for a president’s inaugural parade. The department also participated in the 2009 and 2013 parades when President Barack Obama took the oath of office.Starting in 2009, Ocean City’s former Police Chief Bob Bevin established ties with the Washington Metropolitan Police Department, which led to an invitation to help provide security for both of Obama’s inaugural parades, Prettyman said.The Metropolitan Police Department contacted Prettyman to enlist Ocean City’s help for Trump’s inauguration. Prettyman said he also recruited officers from the police departments in Somers Point, Wildwood and Middle Township for the parade.The Metropolitan Police Department will pay all of the travel, hotel and meal expenses for Ocean City’s officers, as well as their salaries.“We have no out-of-pocket expenses for the event,” Prettyman said.With so many of the officers heading down to Washington for the parade, there will be some rescheduling of the shifts for the remaining police force to ensure enough manpower to protect Ocean City, Prettyman noted.“We can do it comfortably without sacrificing service to our town,” he said.Officers were selected at random for the inauguration duties after they put their names on a sign-up sheet. Preference was given to officers who had not participated in an inauguration before in order to “try to spread the wealth,” Prettyman said. Donald J. Trump when he spoke to the convention crowd in Cleveland, OH.
Government is now awaiting the recommendations of two independent agencies that are in the process of reviewing ExxonMobil’s production licence applications to make a decision on the way forward.Natural Resources Minister Raphael Trotman told Guyana Times on Monday that the US oil giant had submitted its application in December 2016 and was now awaiting approval. He explained that the process was a very rigid one that was aimed at guaranteeing that Guyana got the best deal.He explained that one team was hired to review the environmental aspect of the licence agreement, while the other consultant was looking at the technical aspect of the project.“We expect to get reports from both independent bodies within the next week or two, then Government’s decision will be informed as to whether or not, we can proceed towards products in 2020,” the Minister explained.Trotman said consideration was being given to oil spills and the effects these could have on marine life and life along the coast in relation to fisher folk.Two weeks ago, outgoing Country Manager for ExxonMobil Guyana, Jeff Simon had told the local media that the company was yet to make a Final Investment Decision (FID).The Country Manager explained that there was need for some level of certainty that must be exercised on the part of the Government of Guyana in granting the licences and approvals.The Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is currently being reviewed, while the production licence has to be granted by the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC).Since 2015, ExxonMobil has announced three oil finds offshore Guyana. The most recent discovery came in April 2017, when the company found 25 metres of high-quality oil-bearing sandstone reservoirs at its Snoek well in the Stabroek block.The company has also hit oil at Stabroek’s Payara and Liza fields. The latter is estimated to contain up to 1.4 billion barrels of light oil. According to the company, by the mid-2020s daily output from Stabroek could reach 450,000 barrels.At present, tenders are out for local suppliers and contractors that are able to support a number of projects for the company’s operation.ExxonMobil could invest $5 billion as it prepares to explore oil production in Guyana by 2020.