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Menlo Park budget braces for return to pre-pandemic normalcy

Original post made on Apr 21, 2022

A draft budget for the city's 2022-23 fiscal year comes with a long list of funding requests for more building projects, staffing and the revival of citywide programs that were shut down due to the pandemic.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, April 21, 2022, 11:36 AM

Comments (6)

Posted by Nanc
a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Apr 21, 2022 at 12:36 pm

Nanc is a registered user.

Why would the City want to spend 6 months trying to hire gymnastics staff in order to reopen in the fall when they could contract out the program to a reputable organization that already is ready to staff the program? Why would the City burden itself with the added staff and related benefits/pension expenses when suitable alternatives have been proposed that could have reopened the community gymnastics program months ago?! To have the facility remain empty at a time when all other local recreational programs and gymnastics programs have been reopened for over a year in the area is unconscionable and a terrible misuse of city facilities.

Posted by MP Father
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Apr 21, 2022 at 12:59 pm

MP Father is a registered user.

Kudos to Council Member Ray Mueller for supporting our city and community, "We need to start living life normally again and bringing back enrichment programs for our city, so I support it"

In contrast, Council Member's Betsy Nash's comments come across as myopic and self-serving, "Given that we have a 24% vacancy rate in our community development department ... I believe we need to focus all possible resources on those vacancies."

I am concerned that Nash's interests don't align with those of her constituency and that she is singularly focused on the Community Development department at the expense of all else. Also, she mentions a 24% vacancy rate but I don't see such openings listed on the MP job site: Web Link

Posted by Donnie
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Apr 21, 2022 at 4:25 pm

Donnie is a registered user.

There are currently 3 Menlo Park Gymnastic staff that were reassigned to assist other departments during the Covid shutdown. They are ready to restart and reopen the community's beloved Gymnastics program they miss so dearly. There is no need to hire a private company to overtake the City's gym and turn it in to a private club like the pool. When my son was at the Menlo Children's Center Summer Camp, they used to take the kids swimming as part of camp and once the private company started running it, the City's own Summer camps had to pay for the campers to go swimming for the City's own pool. Not a fan of private companies running City programs.

Posted by Brian
a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Apr 22, 2022 at 10:38 am

Brian is a registered user.

Here is a thought, how about we don't start going into deficit spending. Keep within the revenues or better yet keep under the revenue so we can set some money aside for when we need it. You, the City Council, do not need to spend our, the residents of Menlo Park, money so freely. I understand there is already a lawsuit over what people believe to be illegal taxation. If the city loses that suit it would be nice to have money available to make repayments. I don't think the residents will be happy having to step up and cover that loss.

Treat the city budget like you would treat a personal budget: Stay within your means and set some aside for a rainy day.

Posted by MenloVoter.
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Apr 22, 2022 at 3:27 pm

MenloVoter. is a registered user.

"I don't think the residents will be happy having to step up and cover that loss."

Especially since they'd essentially be paying themselves if taxes are raised to pay back the illegally collected funds. We're already paying the legal fees for the councils' misfeasance. Not to mention they just extended an illegal tax, so when they lose the lawsuit they will have to cough up even more money than they already do. Brilliant move council!

Posted by MP mom
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Apr 23, 2022 at 10:18 am

MP mom is a registered user.

Thanks, Lloyd for raising awareness about the lack of urgency for re-opening the gymnastics center. I encourage anyone who has children who have been patiently waiting to resume gymnastics programs for TWO YEARS -- and those whose children enjoyed the program in the past -- to attend Wednesday's Parks & Rec Commission meeting to voice your support for putting together a plan NOW for re-opening (whether or not it's staffed by the city or a third party can be determined as part of that planning process). Web Link

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