Derek Spalding, reporter for the Daily News, writes in his article on property taxes in the May 14th edition, that City politicians made “significant budget cuts” as they worked through the annual process. He further writes “They also saved another $240,000 by not hiring a planning technician, a traffic-engineering technician and a subdivision planner this year.” He also notes “Those positions could be filled later if needed.” (emphasis mine).

Now Derek, could you explain the logic that unneeded employee positions inserted into the City’s budget, and subsequently deleted later, somehow represents a savings? This is the oldest trick in the bureaucratic playbook. Give a sop to the politicians to make them think they are working hard to hold the line on taxes.The same tactic was used in last years budget, as it will in 2011.

If Nanaimo City elected officials really want to do something about the non-stop upward spiral of City expenditures they should employ the services of an independent negotiator to represent the interests of the taxpayer during the upcoming labour negotiations with C.U.P.E. The City has in past years been taken to the cleaners by the union professionals.  City Staff  preparing to sit across the table from the union during the next contract negotiations cannot serve two masters.Let’s get someone sitting at the table who is prepared to work for the taxpayers.

Wayne Schulstad