You Can’t Trust the City

The City is asking us to approve $413,112,650 worth of bonds in an upcoming election. Early voting starts next week.

That’s a lot of cheddar. Can we trust the City of El Paso with that much money?

Like they say in those ads for mutual funds, “Past performance doesn’t guarantee future results.” Which might be a good slogan for the City to use, because their past performance sucks.

The FY2019 Budget included nearly $90 million in money from Certificates of Obligation for Capital Improvements projects. Certificates of Obligation are money that City Council approves without voter approval. That’s a lot of cheddar.

And there’s no guarantee that the City will spend the bond money the way they promise. Every time the City mentions actual dollar amounts in their presentation, they include the following disclaimer: “Actual use of any approved bond funds will be determined by future action of the City Council.”

But that’s cool. Because we can trust them, right?

Right?

The City has a strategy when it comes to budgeting. They overestimate costs, and underestimate revenues. That way they have a little slush fund they can use for the stuff we really need, like water parks.

Remember when they budgeted for a decline in Sales Tax Revenues, even though Sales Tax Revenues never decline?

Remember when they promised a new $100,000 pedestrian lane on Brown Street?

Remember when they over-budgeted for baby changing stations?

The City sells us smoke and mirrors. Bait and switch. And we keep falling for it because the voters are uninformed.

Be informed. Inform you neighbors. And make sure you get out and vote. Because the Police and Firefighters Unions will make sure they get a good turnout, even though the City will screw them, too.

They’ll be disappointed, too, but hope springs eternal.

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