Friday, September 4, 2009

Mark Down Three Candidates who do NOT pledge zero tax increases

I now have 3 Ulster County candidates who have said that they cannot pledge to
"not vote for any budget that increases taxes for the next 2 years".
Those 3 candidates are:

Jennette Provenzano for District 6 (City of Kingston) Ulster County Legislature,
Alan Lomita for District 7 (Rosendale) Ulster County Legislature, and
Gary Bischoff for District 4 (Saugerties) Ulster County Legislature.

Maybe we can convince them to change their minds?


Ralph Mitchell said...

I received an anonymous blogger's comment which included swear words. Please refrain from the colorful language. However, I wanted to include the main words of the comment which are as follows. "The county legislators have a legal obligation to provide mandated services and to present a balanced budget. You should be spearheading a drive to get the department and the Executive to cut costs and reduce their requests, not asking the Legislators to make arbitrary statements and decisions without knowing the whole story."

Ralph Mitchell said...

I want to comment on the above anonymous blogger's comments. In these hard times, both the Federal and State governments are pushing more and more costs down to the local level. One clear example are the generous pensions that NY State gives its public employee union workers. The "pension tsunami" is going to drown us. My point is that the Ulster County Legislators and Kingston Alderman should satisfy necessary services by "working outside the box". Consider or talk about privatizing services such as highway, public safety, etc. We can give contracts to private companies which do not have the staggering rising pensions to deal with. If the legislators and alderman merely begin talking about privatizing recreation, public safety, public works, the local public employee union leaders will finally listen and maybe give back benefits and salaries. Presently, it appears the local union leaders are willing to let their union employees be laid off --- dismantling our local services which will never be replaced. We have to get out of this downward union spiral of higher and higer taxes for higher and higher union wages and pensions plus fewer union workers due to layoffs and therefore higher taxes and less and less services. Pledging budgets with no tax increases forces everyone to work harder to get us out of this downward spiral that I mention above.

Patty K said...

I heard the radio show when that question was asked. be fair both legislatos said they would do their best not to raise taxes but couldn't make a pledge because a budget hasn't been created yet. I heard provennzano say she would not support closing the infirmery or close the college. why don't youwait until the budget comes out and you have details to discus. you show your ignorance by asking such a question. if they have a private contractor do road work that contractor can charge what ever they want. their interest is to make mony. I understand the county does a lot of their own blactop which saves the county a lot of money and in fact through grants it receives from other governnents they give money back to the county. you don'[t know what the heck your talking about. your not being fair with your reporting. both said they will do what they can to come in with no tax increase infact i heard the lady say she hopes it is a minus number.

Anonymous said...

I noted you wrote on your blog at 6:27am. thats funny the show doesn't start until 7am. I am a sr. citizen who listens to the show and like both of those people very much. you were unfair to ask the question, wait until a budget come out and see what or if there is a tax increase and then see what the legislators do. Of course the republicans will say anything you want themto they are in the miniority stupid and want to win an election.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget what Jim Quigley Said on June 4, 2009 to the Kingston Times...

"I'm not going to say I'm not
going to raise taxes."

Anonymous said...

Any politician who pledges a zero tax increase is being irresponsible and pandering to this small but vocal group. It is foolish and speaks volumes as to their understanding of how budget processes work.

Democrat in ulster said...

Ralph you are being unfair in your accessment. I heard the program and I thought they said it would be irrisponsible to pledge before they see what the budget looks like and what is going to be cut. Maybe not in those exact words but that is what I heard. Taking a no vote from those seeking office is simple, in my mind, "say anything just to get elected". In fact Wadnola voted for ever tax increase the Republicans put forth when he was on the Legislature.
come on, stop the games.

Anonymous said...

The county's budget process is almost exactly backwards from what we have to do at home. Our elected officials decided how much money they are going to spend and then tell us how much money we have to give them.

I might try that with my employer in 2010. I'll budget in a couple of nice vacations, a new TV and then give my employer a bill with a nice 10% salary increasse.

Ralph Mitchell said...

To Patty K (8:21PM),
All individuals, companies and organizations have goals and budgets. The officers or head of households should know their cash flow so they can pay their bills and balance their budgets. I don't think it is acceptable for Ulster County legislators or City Aldermen to not know at this time the grave cash flow and budget positions of the county and city respectively. If we taxpayers can't pay any tax increase, we have the responsibility to tell our candidates our grave position.
It is irresponsible for the candidates to wait until the budget comes out. They should take the time NOW to study the county and city cash flow position and state a goal like zero tax increase. Stating a goal of 5 percent tax increase is just business as usual which is forcing our young people out of one of the highest taxed areas in NY State.

Bill from Hurley, who attends most Legislative meetings said...

Ralph,, you do not know what your taking about. The Executive is responsible for producing a budget to the Legislators per charter. It is at that time Legislators cut what ever they want to or add what ever they want to depending how many votes they can get for either option or adopt the Executives budget. The Legislature hired a consultant to help go through line by line.Legislators control the spending. there will be three public hearings for the public to comment on the budget before it is voted on, please come to one or all of them.

Ralph Mitchell said...

To Bill from Hurley (9:35AM),
I appreciate that you attend legislative meetings and that you stated how "business as usual" is that the executive or mayor produces a budget which the legislature or council reviews and edits after the budget is published. I think the responsible way to do a budget as corporations and individuals use is for the candidates to study the budget NOW. The candidates should state their GOALS and positions NOW so we can begin AIRing new ideas thinking out of the box so as to INFLUENCE the preliminary budget drafts being prepared by the executive and mayor. Waiting until the preliminary budget comes out in October ALLOWS CANDIDATES to
HIDE BEHIND the "facts" in the preliminary budget prepared by the executive and mayor. We have around 60 legislative candidates and 20 aldermanic candidates. With this blog, I am trying to solicit their taxation positions and their ideas for lowering taxes BEFORE the budget comes out.

Wadnola Watchdog said...

Are we talking about the same Fred Wadnola? The same guy who when he had a chance to make this pledge on his own budget, proposed one of the largest tax increases in recent memory? The proposal also included a nice raise for himself! Are you sure it is the same guy? I can't believe it! What hypocrite would make such a statement? Has to be someone else. If this is the caliber of the people behind this movement, it is doomed.


Ulster town budget hikes tax levy 23% Published: Tuesday, October 14, 2003

By Paul KirBy
TOWN OF ULSTER - Supervisor Fred Wadnola has proposed a 2004 budget that raises the tax levy by more than 23 percent and gives raises to elected officials. The proposal calls for a 23.8 percent increase in the combined general and highway tax levy. The proposed levy - the amount to be raised by property taxes - is $5,428,078, an increase of $1,044,766 from the current year's levy of $4,383,312, according to Wadnola's budget.

Ralph Mitchell said...

To: Wadnola Watchdog(2:15PM),

Thanks for the information about 2003, but this is 2009. Obviously, the economy is much worse. Personally, I am worried about who is pledging NO TAX increases NOW for the next 2 years.

Anonymous said...

You missed the point Ralph, like usual. When Fred (or any other Republican) will have no chance to influence the budget, he is for a zero tax increase pledge.
But when he had a chance to DO IT, he did the opposite. If you don't feel that stroking, you are very naive.

Ask a sitting Republican official about this pledge. Ask Greg Helsmortel or Carl Chipman out in Rochester. I'll guarantee they will not sign on. They know what the real deal is.

Ralph Mitchell said...

To 3:49PM,
I want to join forces with Democrats, Republicans and Independents who want to convince this year's local candidates that we want NO INCREASE IN TAXES in our local budgets. It does not help to mention past actions of local candidates. Together we can influence Mike Hein and Jim Sottile that creatively we can have NO TAX INCREASE budgets. Let's stay away from the good ole boy finger-pointing and name-calling. That will only produce the same old 5 to 10 percent tax increase result. Let's band together to save this beautiful area from the severe downward spiral that is destroying us.

Anonymous said...

We have been living beyond our means in Ulster County and New York State for so many years it is ridiculous. First we spent the money our parents accumulated, then we spent our own money and now we are in the process of spending our children's money.

All candidates say one thing then do the opposite. I no longer pay attention to what any of the candidates say. Once they are in office what they say doesn't mean a thing. I judge them by what they do.

Applying that standard you can't possibly vote for any incumbent in any party.

None of the candidates actually campaign on their actual agenda which is to appoint as many of their friends and relatives to public sector jobs as they possibly can during their term of office and to create as many public sector jobs as they possibly can for those same friends and relatives.

We need an entirely new political party that will represent private sector workers and working families. You know who they are. They are people who earn enough that they don't get handouts, but whe are not so rich that they live on inherited wealth and who actually pay their bills through money that they make through their own eforts.

Anonymous said...

Ulster County and New York state have been taxing and spending beyond their means for decades..The effect of this is millions of residents have left New york and taken their paycheks with them..Businesses and JOBS have fled the abusive and rediculous taxes..Ulster County is one of the highest taxed counties in the highest taxed state in the entire nation..WHY can all the other counties across the USA provide "services" at a FRACTION of the cost in Ulster.. STOP taxing out our residents and our JOBS and BUSINESSES and you will have more tax revenue..We can't EVEN keep a Liquor Distributor in Kingston now..And LOOK at all the other jobs and businesses that are GONE!!! STOP destroying the tax base with more JOB KILLING TAXES!!!

Anonymous said...

The Kingston Common Council does not control the budget, the Mayor and his departments do. The Council can only approve or reject it. (ask any of them if they have been consulted in this process)
Either way the Mayor has the control.
The Council CAN however refuse to push through resolutions that cost the taxpayers, including when the Mayor insists it is neccessary (which often does not benefit everyday citizens, only a select few)

Ralph Mitchell said...

To 11:42,
One of the main objectives of this ULSTERTAX blog is to sign up a large number of candidates who pledge NO TAX INCREASE. This show of force of NO TAX INCREASE candidates and their supporters can and should influence both Mayor Sottile and Executive Hein to produce a NO TAX INCREASE budget before the NO TAX INCREASE candidates demand it. If the general public gets behind the NO TAX INCREASE campaign it can and will cause the budgets to have NO TAX INCREASE.

Anonymous said...

So you aint got SH*T.. All the candidates need HEALTH insurance..and PENSIONS and paid VACATIONS and county CARS and INSURANCE and GAS and EXPENSE ACCOUNTS and "FREE HEALTH CARE FOR LIFE FOR THIE FAMILIES" and they only RUN for office so THEY can bleed the taxpayers dry for it and to get all their RELATIVES and POLITICAL HACKS and STOOGES and CRONIES and LACKIES JOBS and the SAME BENEFITS.. So you would THINK the schmucks being force dout of Ulster County for DECADES would catch on to this al but NOPE..Dumber than a box of rocks ..OR on the take!!! Two sides to EVERY Story!!!