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City of El Paso debt=$2,670,400,000, county and school district debt=$1,600,000,000. Total $4.27 billion. Your share $19,350
Updated: 34 min 12 sec ago

City code of conduct

Tue, 06/11/2019 - 5:00am

The Monday, June 10, 2019 agenda for the special city council meeting has this item on it:

Discussion and action on a Resolution to approve a Code of Conduct for Elected Officials.

You can read it here:  http://agenda.elpasotexas.gov/sirepub/cache/2/bczq5g2bmlqzmh1opsjoyo4y/32527806072019073224662.PDF

One can only hope.

We deserve better

Brutus

Categories: Local Blogs

City budget growing faster than our population

Mon, 06/10/2019 - 5:00am

elrichboy over at El Chuqueno posted this the other day:

Read ’em and Weep

He points out that our population has only grown by 1.1% over the last six years.

Yet our city budget grows every year.

Max Grossman pointed out that the city general fund budget has grown 24% over the last five years.

 

We deserve better

Brutus

Categories: Local Blogs

Dental school

Sun, 06/09/2019 - 5:00am

The Woody and Gayle Hunt Family Foundation donated $25 million to start a dental school in El Paso.

The result will be the first dental school to be opened in Texas in almost 50 years.

Yes, the Hunt’s have made a lot of money in El Paso.

They did not have to donate the $25 million but chose to anyway.

I thank them.

This is better

Brutus

 

Categories: Local Blogs

Open line Saturday

Sat, 06/08/2019 - 5:00am

Tell us what’s on your mind.

Saturday is the day where the readers pick the subjects.

We deserve better

Brutus

Categories: Local Blogs

City council corrected minutes

Fri, 06/07/2019 - 10:49am

I don’t know how to post a PDF as part of a comment so I’m breaking my one post a day rule to provide a PDF of the minutes we wrote about in Behind closed doors.

cityminutes4172007

Brutus

Categories: Local Blogs

Behind closed doors

Fri, 06/07/2019 - 5:00am

The situation we discussed in Rewriting history  continues to bother me.

Recapping, city council recently had an agenda item to approve the “corrected minutes” of a city council meeting held more than 12 years ago.

None of the city representatives, nor the mayor, nor the city manager, nor the city attorney were on board at that time.

How can any of them approve minutes as being accurate when they were not involved 12 years ago?

The minutes are being “corrected” for a reason.  Either someone wants something and the old minutes will not allow it, or they don’t want something that the old minutes require, is my guess.

The current group has not offered an explanation.

We deserve better

Brutus

Categories: Local Blogs

D-Day anniversary

Thu, 06/06/2019 - 5:00am

Today is the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings (June 6, 1944).

I am thankful for what they accomplished.

Brutus

 

 

Categories: Local Blogs

Amateur hour

Wed, 06/05/2019 - 5:38am

Our city government is evidently getting into the clothing business, kinda.

You can see the full image here http://www.elpasotexas.gov/~/media/files/coep/temporary/aac2019%20-%20t-shirt-hat.ashx

In this day of e-commerce the city invites you to send them an email if you want to purchase something.

The web page tells us that the proceeds “go directly to our All-America City fundraising efforts”.

If we all pitch in and buy something maybe they will have enough money to only raise our taxes by 7%.

We deserve better

Brutus

Categories: Local Blogs

Strange things at TXDOT

Tue, 06/04/2019 - 7:03am

I heard the other day that the three top TXDOT employees working in the El Paso area left their positions on the same day recently.

Does anyone know what happened?

We deserve better

Brutus

Categories: Local Blogs

EPISD–pay raise issues

Mon, 06/03/2019 - 5:00am

I heard talk about a potential new conflict between EPISD and its teachers the other day.

I don’t have details yet but what I think I heard is that the state legislature allocated pay raises for teachers and EPISD is planning to deliver them in a manner that is not as good for teachers with more longevity as was planned by the legislature.

Can anyone fill us in on the facts?

Brutus

Categories: Local Blogs

Rewriting history

Sun, 06/02/2019 - 5:00am

Item 1.1 on the Tuesday, May 28, 2019 meeting of city council reads:

Approval of Minutes of the Regular City Council Meeting of May 14, 2019, the Agenda Review Meeting of May 13, 2019 and the corrected minutes for the Regular City Council Meeting of April 17, 2007.

They are amending the minutes of a city council meeting that was held over 12 years ago.

Of course they don’t bother to tell us what they want to change.

We deserve better

Brutus

Categories: Local Blogs

Saturday–tell us what you are thinking

Sat, 06/01/2019 - 5:00am

It’s Saturday.

Let us hear from you.

Brutus

Categories: Local Blogs

More bicycles

Fri, 05/31/2019 - 5:00am

Did you know about this?

Let’s see, 7 new bike share stations with 80 bikes for $720,000.

That comes to $9,000 per bike.

We deserve better

Brutus

Categories: Local Blogs

Sneaky, huh?

Thu, 05/30/2019 - 5:00am

This comes from a paper titled Why Tax Increment Financing Often Fails and How Communities Can Do Better published by the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy:

In addition, TIF can make cities’ financial decisions less transparent by separating them from the normal budget process. In Chicago, for example, $660 million — nearly a third of the city’s property taxes — go to TIF districts, making public scrutiny of these funds more difficult and preventing elected officials from re-prioritizing the spending. Finally, TIF carries the same risks as other types of business tax incentives, which can lead to inter-city competition and short-term decision-making.

Could it be that the real purpose of the TIF push here in El Paso is to take tax money out of the hands of city council and give it to others?

You can read the entire report here: https://www.lincolninst.edu/publications/articles/new-report.

We deserve better

Brutus

Categories: Local Blogs

At this rate …

Wed, 05/29/2019 - 5:00am

Max Grossman sent this out:

The General Fund Budget of the City of El Paso increased from $344,566,512 in FY 2014 to a projected expenditure of $428,597,800 in FY 2019, an increase of 24% (FY 19 Budget Book, p. 134). During the same period, our City property tax has also increased by 24%, along with a 24% increase in our debt servicing costs (City chart attached). During the same five-year period, the population of El Paso grew from 682,648 to approximately 684,500 people, a gain of less than 1,900 people (0.3%). How can our City possibly justify such a massive expansion of government in so short a time when our population has flatlined? Given the budgetary situation, does it make sense for the City of El Paso to build a sports arena that we did not vote for and cannot possibly afford?
Categories: Local Blogs

Memorial day 2019

Mon, 05/27/2019 - 5:00am

Today I remember and pray for those men and women who died while serving in the United States military.

We deserve better

Brutus

Categories: Local Blogs

A little humor

Sun, 05/26/2019 - 5:00am

Brutus

Categories: Local Blogs

Saturday open line

Sat, 05/25/2019 - 5:00am

It’s Saturday so it’s the reader’s turn to pick their topics.

We deserve better

Brutus

Categories: Local Blogs

Watch out for the kids

Fri, 05/24/2019 - 5:35am

School is out.

Please be extra careful in your driving.

We deserve better

Brutus

Categories: Local Blogs


by Dr. Radut