There are certainly serious concerns about the financial reporting by the City over the last year. This is really a mini scandal, and whether this council wants to investigate the issue or push it aside is a serious question.
The ousted majority of Winkler, Duboc and Jellins, used what was then a huge budget deficit projection, to push though a privatization of the taxpayer funded Burgess pool on a no bid contract to Tim Sheeper’s Menlo Masters group. The financials of this contract as so un-favorable to the city it is ridiculous. A prominent member of that group was known to comment, “we were willing to pay rent, but the City never asked for rent”. Well the Sinnott’s have their “country club” taxpayer subsidized pool now and until we have another safety scare with parents and children put into grave danger from chlorine leaks or the like, it seems destined to stay that way.
Then the same majority tried to privatize child care using this dire budget projection. Although in my purview, I don’t understand why the City is in the child care business at all, using a trumped up felonious financial projection to change the status quo was hardly ethical to say the least.
Suddenly this majority at election time announced the budget deficit is now a rather large budget surplus. Who and at what time period are we to believe on this issue? Apparently the voting citizens of Menlo Park did know who to believe, and the old majority is now gone. Those three are now represented by one council member, who was very fortunate to be elected at that.
Thus far this new council has not seemed to want to review the excesses of the past four years. Maybe it is indeed better to spend their time on looking forward rather than backward. But as many seem to be saying, the UUT was certainly passed under a umbrella of false information about the city finances. If you really feel strongly about it, the council should really get a task force moving to fully investigate the issue.
Since, City staff as well as outgoing City manager Boesch would be put under special scrutiny in such a investigation, this task force should be headed by a complete independent outsider. Perhaps a retired judge.
I would really like to know the answer to the mini scandal. Will this council have the fortitude to press the issue?