Not even one month after a bruising 7% tax hike, Supervisor Scott Russell and the Southold town board plans to adopt a series of budget busting amendments at tomorrow’s meeting that will further raid our pockets and bleed the town dry!
Even more outrageous is the fact that many of these budget shifts come on the heels of high minded declarations by our elected leaders about the gluttonous spending hike being “necessary investments” in infrastructure, maintenance, and staff. But this series of budget amendments shows that was all a scam to hide the absorbent overtime payments being made to staff!
To add extra insult to injury, they plan to raid the “rainy day fund” to hire more tax collectors to shake out more money from our neighbors!
It takes an extra helping of contempt for our neighbors to pull this type of shell game so soon after the budget was passed and there was a couple people watching. Now that’s passed and people move on to the holiday and family, they sneak through the real plan that frivolously fritters away our tax dollars to their connected few union beneficiaries.
Thousands upon thousands of dollars in regular earnings (work we pay for) shifted to “vacation and overtime earnings” (we pay but get no work) and rainy day funds raided for overtime.
Well golly, they’re doing the work, why shouldn’t they get overtime?
The issue is that this is a common government scam. Here’s how it works:
Southold appropriates a number of positions that can be filled, 10 people in public works, for example. But one or two of those are actually phantom positions, never intended to be filled. Instead, this is used to pad the pocket of the employees with unnecessary overtime and vacation pay. In short, instead of hiring an extra person the others split that person’s salary. In return, the elected official gets political support from the union come election time.
Even the “critical maintenance” that Supervisor Russell defended in a passionate speech to explain his profligacy goes out the window now that they think we’re not looking! Residents should be outraged at this kind of gamesmanship designed to hide the ball and hasten more tax hikes.
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