Voice of the people: Kerry Blalock

December 7, 2019 8:15:06 PM

  -

 

Doesn't agree city deserves recognition for financial state

 

The spin by our city is making me dizzy.

 

Mr. Dillon is not happy with The Commercial Dispatch's coverage of the $2.4 million savings in eight months. He thinks they deserve to be thrown a bone in Sunday's paper. Maybe they are starting to feel the walls closing in on them. Well they are. I paid my property taxes (unlike a lot of our city officials) as soon as the bills arrived last month. I gritted my teeth as I cut the checks and looked at the increase I had to pay. I also raised my medical deductible to $5,000 so I could afford my premiums. Mr. Dillon and other city employees have a $500 deductible, and I'm sure he can't relate. The very same people that put us in this financial mess now want praise for doing their job of getting us out. Part of the so-called savings is a $450,000 refund from the federal government for the city hall renovation, the one that had a leaky roof after completion. Getting a refund is not savings at all and should not be included in the figures.

 

 

This administration relies on ignorance and lack of attention of the populace. Our debt is up over 700% in the last 10 years. You approve no bid deals like the street lights. We will be paying around $800 per light. This should have been done by the light and water department as lights needed servicing. But if we did that there would not be a need to pay overpriced contractors and no money for the Mayor's BFF and city project manager Jabari Edwards and J5. The good news is FEMA and MEMA will probably pay off next year, and we will be flush with cash and the tap can be turned back on. This will be good news for J5 since they had over $600,000 in tax liens against them last April. They have since paid some of the liens off. The bad news is now they and associated businesses are currently accumulating more and have in excess of $1,000,000 in unsatisfied federal tax liens according to public records. Most of the liens are due to unpaid 941 taxes. When an employer withholds money from your check that is 941 tax. That is your money and they are required to send that amount in quarterly. Based on public records they don't have any problem spending money on property in Bent Tree, 60 acres on Officers Lake Road, new headquarters downtown and high rise offices in Atlanta and an otherwise lavish lifestyle.

 

Is this the kind of management the city needs? Our police and fire departments are in crisis mode with no end in sight. Employee turnover is high and morale is low. Public works is as bad as ever and now we have See Click Fix at $8,500 per year. Almost four years ago I had the Mayor, COO, city engineer, the ward councilman and Public Works director out to look at a drainage problem off of Highway 45. I was told the city would take care of it and as usual it has not been touched. So if having all of these people who are in charge out to look at this problem didn't fix it, do you think an app will? This is just another waste of tax dollars.

 

In the end, of course they will just raise your taxes to cover whatever waste they create in the future and tell you what a great job they are doing. Mr. Dillon wants us to throw him a bone. Throwing something really sounds good, maybe something a little bigger and heavier!

 

Kerry Blalock

 

Columbus