by Max Grossman

Cindy Ramirez of El Paso Matters published a substantive report on the ongoing budget talks in City Council.

To summarize, Interim City Manager Cary Westin and CFO Robert Cortinas proposed a total budget of $1.3 billion for FY 2024, an increase of $133.5 million over FY 2023 (+11.4%).

$47 million of the $133.5 million increase would be to the General Fund, which is drawn mostly from our property and sale tax—and about half of that would fund salary increases for Police Department and Fire Department employees.

The double-digit increase is in spite of the fact that our City population has declined by nearly 1% since 2017.

And let’s not forget that our City has yet to issue $600 million in new debt that was approved by the voters in three different bond elections, putting upward pressure on our property tax.

The only good news here is that four City reps and the Mayor are committed to not raising our City property tax to fund the budget increase, but their ability to keep their promise will depend upon the certified tax roll that will be released by the CAD on July 25.


Ramirez cited statements from Reps. Kennedy, Salcido and Fierro as well as Mayor Leeser opposing any increase in our property tax.

But then there is Rep. Cassandra Hernandez, who wants to issue more debt.

We are talking about a career politician who voted to raise our property tax six times in a row and to issue more than a half-billion dollars in certificates of obligation without voter approval.

She voted for every single boondoggle and corporate handout that came across her desk, including TIRZ 13, the Great Wolf Lodge debacle, and the odious Arena.

In 2018 she stated publicly “It would be in our best interests, including every taxing entity, to ensure that all of the homes are being appraised at a higher level so that we can see more valuations and more tax revenue.”

And now she is on the hot seat for purchasing enough gasoline to drive around the circumference of our planet twice.

If that were not enough, now we learn she wants to explore issuing a new quality of life bond, telling Ramirez, “We have to have the vision to look at the development for the next 20 years and these 2012 quality of life programs have already come to an end.”

For her, our astronomical debt burden is of no concern.

Will there be any end to her wasteful spending of our hard-earned income?

Can you believe she wants to run for mayor?

I would rather vote for a can of noodle soup.


  1. I’m sure the Hunt-Foster Axis of Taxes would love to run her for mayor but the gas card debacle has made her candidacy toxic. She may as well have beaten her dog, for all that would get her. I don’t think we have to worry about her anymore.

  2. Jerry K…..I agree. Who is going to vote for a tainted Liar. “I’m the ONLY one who uses the card,” only to admit to the Ethics commission that not only she, but her husband and a “friend” uses it. Then on video was declaring how big her district is in SQUARE FEET! Her district is 28 miles large, yet measured it out in SQ. Ft. That she actually drives more because she is putting the amount of work worth TWO people. With FIVE kids? And, her attorney, Felix Valenzuela had several opportunities to introduce evidence of her work, mileage, functions, etc……Instead, only sent a meager 3 page document. Then did a “document dump” for Mr. Zavala, the gentleman filing the ethics charge, as well as the Ethics Commission. The crappy part is that Mr. Zavala is a Blind man with diabetes. Que Huevos! to do that to him. She seems vindictive, unethical and squeezing vendors—more on that in another post.

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