We always here "show us the cuts" when someone proposes holding the line on taxes, and to his credit, Stewart presented enough cuts in spending to give us a zero tax growth rate:
He proposed $21 million in budget cuts yesterday, delaying a planned vote by the board on the county's spending plan for the coming year.
In the end, by straw poll vote the supervisors approved a little less than a third of those cuts:
In all, supervisors cut the proposed budget by $6.7 million. That amount brings the property tax rate to 97 cents per $100 assessed valuation. The change would amount to a 5 percent increase in the tax bill of the average homeowner.
As Denny noted in his e-mail, that 97 cents is pretty close to the proposed rate approved by half the board last month.
Some supervisors complained that Stewart had not presented his cuts ahead of time so they could look them over:
Stewart's proposal caught some supervisors by surprise. The board was scheduled to mark up the $913 million budget yesterday, and supervisors usually offer spending cuts in advance so they can be discussed.
"I'm pleased the chairman came up with something," said Supervisor Martin E. Nohe (R-Coles). "I would rather have the proposal at the last minute in lieu of no proposal at all. But having a weekend to review it would have been helpful."
I am also pleased that Stewart made a proposal. But I heard NOTHING about any other proposals in advance. So, if the supervisors usually put these out in advance, and we didn't hear of any in advance, does that mean that NO OTHER SUPERVISOR proposed cuts in the budget?
My guess is there had to be at least a few proposals by others, but they must have been dwarfed by Stewart's proposals.
I wonder how many millions Marty Nohe was willing to stick his noeck out for to save us taxpayers from the 8% increase in the rate he was trying to force on us by his votes on the advertised rate.
If I'm lucky, someone will comment and point me to all those proposals made by Nohe, Caddigan, and the others who want higher taxes.
Given the supervisor's unwillingness to even cut their own salary increases, I would be surprised that had the guts to propose cutting anything else.
Except of course for Principi, who seems to want to cut the funds for illegal immigrant enforcement.