12 March 2014

Humpday Happenings...

And welcome BACK into the Tundra that is passing for the Midwest this morning.
A very far cry from the past two days, that's for sure.
When I got up earlier (0515 hrs), we had just transitioned over from rain to snow...a very "heavy" snow, which means the possibility of downed branches and outages exists, especially with sustained winds of around 20 MPH.
All area schools (here) have closed, and traffic is minimal (yay - no boomcars). What's left on the police scanner tells a tale of slide-offs and accidents, so we know local ACSD, FWPD and the ISP will have their hands full.
I wouldn't be expecting to see the sun much, if at all today.
We've even had reports of "thundersnow" and lighting.
The high today..well, we already passed it, and not the temps will be dropping UNDER the freezing mark, with a low tonight of around ZERO DEGREES.
Betcha wish it was yesterday all over again, hmm?
So feel free to pour a nice large hot cup of whatever you fancy...it's gonna be a rough ride early today.
*** First off the toboggan trail today is out WHO SAID THAT? quote:
"Either you run the day, or the day runs you."
That ought to set the tone for such a day as this, considering all the problems that can occur.
The answer at the top of tomorrow's post.
Meanwhile, back at the self-help center...
*** The FWIA has managed to beg more of that legacy money from City Council (last night), all for the chance to get flights to the east coast.
And the beg-a-thon continues....
Naturally, the money will not be needed if a carrier takes the flights AND all seats are occupied ON those flights.
Here's the story link:
So, if I get this straight, the city will blow around $600K for air service, but ONLY if it's "unprofitable"?
There is this "minimum revenue guarantee" BS that bothers me.
So THAT'S where our money goes?
We will guarantee money to the airport, but ONLY if we have EMPTY seats on easy coast flights?
Sure sounds like another democratic Ponzi-scheme to me.
Naturally, City Council passed (read rubber-stamped) this crap with only ONE voice of reason voting it down - that of Russ Jehl, councilman for the 2nd district, who stated that "I'm uncomfortable with subsidizing a co-equal taxing body that has more cash on hand than we do", pointing out that the airport authority has a healthy cash balance of about $9.5 MIL de the $26 MIL annual budget and a robust capital spending plan.
But everyone ELSE on city council doesn't have such concerns or convictions, although "smiling" Tom Smith (1st district) did grudgingly vote to the affirmative (he caved), but not before stating " Legacy money is viewed by the citizens as a COMMUNITY treasure, and it's use has to be very, VERY well explained."
He continued by saying "...but this has been a long-standing need, so I will swallow hard and vote for the 50-50 split with CEDIT (for the funding of this "chance" if empty seats are on those airliners...if they choose to fly to the east coast).
Sure seems like a "WTF???" moment to me.
You watch, that legacy fund money will wind up being pissed up against so many nice, new "walls" that this city doesn't really need.
Moving on...
*** The FWCS also has money issues, and here's the story link:
And a constant source of "need"
Yep, they're talking "big" changes...and no legacy money being spent there...(yet).
Such things as special education student assessments, district transportation routes, and parents' ability to choose where students attend school are ALL on the plate this time around.
Dr. Robinson (FWCS superintendent) outlined major issues at the first of five meetings to be held at various high schools around the city (last night was at Southside).
The items discussed were the state voucher program and A-F accountability, as well as budget cuts and property tax caps affecting the district's budgets.
The FWCS is another one of those THIRTY "entities" that can ask to have taxes levied against the citizens...just like the FWIA...or Citilink.
Thing is, the property tax CAPS are there to prevent everyone from sticking their fingers in OUR tax-paying pies every single year all at once.
It is there to slow down the (artificial) rate at which properties are being assessed, rather than the ACTUAL rate dictated by the market and the values contained therein.
And let's face it, the more you can CHARGE for a property (assessed value and not market value) the HIGHER the tax money received...right?
It's a rather nice little game the city and county have going for them, but thanks to the TAX CAP, it only eats away at you in smaller increments.
*** Last back to the igloo today...the snow that's been coming down has given us all something out of a Thomas Kincade painting.
The back yard's there SOMEPLACE!
Kinda makes you want to put up the Christmas tree again...well, maybe we won't go THAT far.
It IS proving to be a royal pain-in-the-ass to most any person on the roads today.
The new snow is covering the rain that came earlier this morning, and also what was left of the ice and snow from the last event under all THAT.
And anyone who's driven for a living (like myself) will tell you....that ain't all that good, no matter HOW many wheel drives your vehicle has.
THIS will get you around the city (even on the SE side)!
Probably the best vehicle to have in THIS crap would be the FWPD's V-100 Commando armored car...or a surplus Humvee.
This is akin to the snowfalls that hit our troops in WW2 during the Battle of the Bulge in the Ardennes, and even fully-TRACKED vehicles had a rough go of that weather, sliding all about.
I've already shoveled ONCE, and that snow was HEAVY...as in LOTS of moisture in it...
It's like picking up snow-covered slush...which, for the most part is exactly what this crap is.
Naturally, no on else will be doing such nonsensical things like clearing the sidewalks down here, and that will once again prove to be a bane to motorists AND pedestrians as early as tomorrow when things return to some level of normalcy.
It still looks pretty, though.
Granted, this weekend will provide higher temps (near 50) and that will again bring more water trying to get down the blocked culverts.
I guess our quote would seem in-step with the weather today...and the best we can hope to do IS run this day.
For if we do not, it WILL most certainly run every one of us.
And that we can take to the bank...(as soon as we shovel out the driveway...lol)
Be well, make a difference to someone, and...
Stay SAFE out there, America.


CWMartin said...

Well, I won't talk about the snow- I just posted my grim story.

And I won't talk about the airline thing, because there's just so many ways you can call a person (say a mayor or a CEO of a carpetbagging conglomerate) an as$#0le.

And Wendy Robinson, no for the same reason.

Geez, I guess that brings us back to the weather, eh?

Hope you are staying warm.

Bob G. said...

heh...I like YOUR take on situations around here a lot more than MINE!

And there is more on the local income taxing thing...that's for tomorrow, and it's rather scathing.

Yep, we're staying watm...and I KNOW all of you will do likewise.

Thanks for skiing on over today to comment.

Stay SAFE up there.

John DuMond said...

The storm that's whacking you guys is supposed to show up in NY later today/this evening. So far, the weather geeks are predicting the brunt of it will land north and west of Albany. I'm keeping my fingers crossed (but not holding my breath).

Bob G. said...

John D.:
From what I heard, upstate NY was on some sort of BLIZZARD warning (or watch)...
Please don't hold your breath, either.
But feel free to grunt, groan, gripe, piss & moan, rant and rave to your heart's content, 'K?

I've been doing ALL of that...and more.
(and much too often)

Thanks for skating up today to comment.

Stay safe & warm out there.