Friday, December 22, 2006

The Bond brothers strike again

I think we have been a victim of a bait and switch. All the attention this month has been about the proposed pay raise for the Luzerne County commissioners and row officers that in the scheme of things wouldn't cost much. Then right before the holidays when nobody is paying attention Majority Commissioners Todd Vonderheid and Greg Skrepenak vote for a "balanced budget" that relies on invented revenues and rescheduling debt that will have to paid off later at a higher rate. But they weren't done. They then voted to use $7 million in unused bond money borrowed to build a new juvenile detention center that wasn't spent instead of cancelling the debt or holding on to it to fund the new prison on a wish list of other local projects. I don't know what the rules are for using bond money but it strikes me as dishonest to float a bond for one purpose then spend it on another.

Then they drop this bombshell.

$193M county capital plan issued

If a plan released Thursday holds true, Luzerne County Commissioners Todd Vonderheid and Greg Skrepenak plan to borrow and spend $14 million for several capital projects during 2007 -- their final year in office together.

The last time I checked the county had over $125 million in debt obligations. You have to pay it back at some point but how will you do it if you take even more properties off the tax rolls.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

These guys are nuts. They make me want to throw up. 100 million for a prison?!? The small-time nonviolent drug addict needs help, not a cell. Incarcerating people is going to be big business in Luzerne County in the future, bigger than it already is.
All that money to CitiVest and the City of Wilkes-Barre?!? What a joke. Those two parties are just pouring that money into their friends pockets. The Commissioners just voted to give the City of Wilkes-Barre 1 million dollars to "entice a developer" to open a restaurant in the Bank Building. What developer? Tom Leighton knows, and he's not telling, because that's not good business prectice. Sounds to me like it's no longer an open free-market system when the government is doing all of the building, buying, remodeling, constructing and renting. Sounds to me like they just gave Leighton's buddy a 1 million tax-dollar Christmas present. I could go on and on about this shit, but I think this might be a good weekend to take a mental break from these thieves - they are makin' go outta my mind with bewilderment. No doubt they chose this weekend to announce all of this spending when they figured folks (that 1% that don't ignore them the rest of the year) aren't paying attention.
peace - t.g.