27 January 2009

Another Brick In The Wall...
And most likely, another HAND in our POCKET, as the city of Fort Wayne seeks to raise our sewer rates.
That's the BAD news.
The GOOD news?
Well, that's dependant upon the amount of state and/or federal money the city gets to foot whatever portion of the charges they are seeking.
Rest assured that the TAXPAYER will figure in most prominently in some manner.
We always DO, don't we?
Interesting thing is that the SEWER rates are not for work on the SEWER system (which will most likely incur another hike at a later date), but for the Fort Wayne Clean Rivers Task Force (another "task force"?).
Yepper, this $240 MILLION plan is to keep raw sewage out of the area rivers. Now whatever happened to having all this sewage flow back TO the filtration plant in the first place?
And if the sewage IS not, then WHY not?
More importantly, what about sewage that flows into our "rivers" (read overgrown creeks, compared to the DELAWARE and SCHUYLKILL in Philly) from way UPSTREAM, far from our city limits?
We basically can't control what crap goes into these rivers 100 miles away now, can we? Maybe telling some of my "neighbors" that pouring all that BACON and PORK FAT down the drain isn't such a GOOD idea...'ya think?
Oh, wait...some of them always cook OUTSIDE, because they haven't found out that the STOVE is for COOKING (yet)...just home heating.
My bad.
If this project WILL deal primarily with sewage entering the rivers from OUR immediate area, then perhaps it is a worthwhile project, but I've got a slightly different tack on this...
Why doesn't the city pursue and cite the hell out of places that ARE dumping sewage into the rivers LOCALLY?
Seems like THAT would be an EASY source to fund all this.
I mean $hit always seems to flow DOWN stream, and being able to FIND the local culprits should be a no-brainer, right?
So WHY ask for $240 MILLION?
How's about "only" $50 million?
That would certainly fund some guys in rubber boats to cruise the rivers and look for pipes that are dumping sewage into the waterways. Then, all you do is track back to the source, and tell them to cease under penalty of closure.
Sounds way too simple to be practical, right?
And yet, THIS would probably be the best (and cheapest) recourse.
NAH...let's form another steekin' "task force" to "get to the bottom" of this sewage problem (ewww...gonna need hip-waders for that).
This Wednesday is a "public" meeting where people can go to voice their concerns. The location is the Allen County Public Library auditorium at 7PM (1900 hours).It's all for show anyway, as MOST public meetings are.
They hear what you say, then do what THEY want to, in spite of it.
The city once stated that sewer rates could TRIPLE to pay for the work, but the "task force" was created to find other ways to finance the costs (and add the COST of this task force to the overall price, no doubt).
Utilities director Kumar Menon said the rates WILL have to INCREASE to show residents are making a "sacrifice" for the work. All sounds a bit "Obama-ish" to me...how about you?
As to sacrifices?
I guess bringing a young lamb down there to toss on the (city hall) altar is out of the question then, right?
Was just a thought, anyway.
This task force, however sees a NEED to finance the project through MULTIPLE sources (that would be OUR pockets, folks).
Poorer people are hit the hardest when it comes to utility costs...maybe that's why we see so many houses burned to the ground when that electric oven is set on SELF-CLEAN (with the door left open) because the GAS BILL wasn't paid and the heat was shut the hell off.
One way to amend the costs would be to enact a local sales tax increase. Just a .5% increase would raise that target $240 MILLION in Allen County in 15 years (but the city doesn't have that time to waste, as it were...it wants that money NOW).
Curiously enough local governments cannot impose such a tax, but a bill has been introduced in the STATE legislature to grant such an option (how frigging conVIENient). I'd be interested to know WHICH state politicos are in FAVOR of this, and why THEY'RE not going to be paying the bill, because YOU are.
But don't think that FLUSHING LESS will get you off the hook for the rate increase. You pay even IF you DO NOT FLUSH (maybe that's why some of "my" locals take to pissin' on other peoples' garages, or hang it out the car door). You pay for the SERVICE, whether you use it...or not.
So for YOU, the taxpayer, you "Get the business" anyway.
You're hosed, boned, screwed no matter WHAT you do (or do not do).
A real win-win for the city.
Now that's CHANGE I CAN believe in.
NEXT fairy tale, kiddies...
"Hey, Ralph..."


BR said...

Maybe the city should admitt their mistake about Harrison Square. They could use it as a storage tank. How much would it cost to raise the walls another 30 feet?

Bob G. said...


We must always remember:
The CITY is NEVER "wrong"...

They might hardly EVER be RIGHT, but they are never WRONG!


Storage tank...I like that!
(what a wondeful SMELL you've discovered)