Public hearings are a ‘farce’
The city government has a proclivity of not being diaphanous (vague).
Therefore, when the ordinary citizenry does not acquiesce and challenges, the citizen becomes inconsequential.
They are treated with intimidation and disdain when in attendance of public hearings.
In lieu of reasonable suggestions, whilst making their decisions, Council decisions are determined much prior to public hearings and Council meetings and it matters not what anyone in disagreement has to say.
Everyone of the public hearings recently are nothing more than a farce. From the Special Assessment Fees (for 10th & State), the $5 million General Obligation bonding (for 10th & State), the raising of the rental permit fees to the 3 percent Franchise Fee on Alliant bills. The same will be true of the usage of the Armory.
The city needs money and they do not care whether the fees and increases are excessive and no guarantee they will be used as intended.
Why do they need money?
When community was 10,000 strong in population, city managed with a mayor, council, clerk and approximately five policemen. Now with population in decline, by 1/2, city needs mayor, council, administrator, clerk, soon to be financial advisor and a multiple amount of law enforcement, some retired, some reaching retirement age.
Since 2006 the city has been manipulated into a plethora of projects which have and will be extremely costly to the city. Seven major projects for water, sewer, sludge and street all ranging at a cost from $1 million to $7 million per project.
In retrospect, the Water Plant closure was not a good financial decision by the Water Board. Against citizens vote and Mayor Fenton’s veto of the Water Board vote, it closed anyway, because Water Board vote won out. With monies remunerated to RRWA since, a new state-of-the-art facility (employing 3/4 people) using RRWA as a second source of water, would have been considerably less monies than amount paid to RRWA each month thereafter.