Times Union: Jacksonville council panel approves cuts to police-fire pension, clinic security

This looks a bit like a success for Curt Lee, and I hope his opinion on these folks had something to do with it. He is right, these folks are over the top. And we were expected to pay for yet another brand new vehicle (and not a cheap one at that). Good for the city council for cutting their budget. This is rediculous at a time when many are having a hard time feeding their families much less buying a new car.
August 31, 2012
By David Bauerlein, Steve Patterson
A Jacksonville City Council panel voted to cut spending to police and fire pensions and security at health clinics as a panel reviewing the 2013 city budget inched toward a balanced budget Thursday.

The council Finance Committee also voted to move traffic court from space that’s leased on Beach Boulevard into the new Duval County Courthouse, although lease terms will prevent much savings in the next budget year.

Finance members still have to find about $668,000 to balance the 2013 budget when they review spending plans for the Public Works department and Children’s Commission today.

“I wouldn’t want to be Public Works or the Children’s Commission,” Finance Chair John Crescimbeni said.

It was actually a big improvement from a day earlier, when the committee was trying to plug about a $1.6 million hole.

A chain of decisions whittled away expenses for the city.

The committee sliced $650,000 off the city’s contribution to the Police and Fire Pension Fund after quizzing its director about spending on items including a new Ford Expedition it bought in June.

Director John Keane acknowledged he sometimes parks the Expedition at his home. He told the committee it’s used for trips to Tallahassee, to the post office and for business purposes. He had said earlier a 2011 Ford Flex the fund owned had developed mechanical problems that led to the choice to replace it.

Read more at Jacksonville.com: http://jacksonville.com/news/metro/2012-08-30/story/jacksonville-co...

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