LETTERS TO THE EDITOR - Cut budget to fix streets

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I do not claim to know very much about constructing a city budget. I do know that there are only two ways to compensate for a reduction in income: Increase income or reduce expenses.

Most of the citizens of our fair city do not have a way to increase income. We find that our income is reduced by increased taxes and increased cost of services. Therefore, given the healthy monetary appetite of our city and county government, we must find ways to reduce expenses.

A recent U-B article indicates that we will be asked to increase our sales tax an additional two-tenths of a percent so that we can spend $1 million a year to upgrade, repair and replace our badly deteriorating street system.

There is no question that something needs to be done about our streets. But this expense comes on the heels of our Valley Transit additional three-tenths of a percent sales tax increase.

And let me remind us all that the county supported another one-tenth of a percent increase for psychological support for the homeless and others.

And don't forget that your utility bill from the city has increased to support water and sewer repair and replacement.

I support all of these fine things but I also support the concept that some budget consideration is in order.

Our 2012 city budget is right at $76,492,000 (that's more than $76 million).

If the City Council would instruct our city manger to cut the budget by one and one-third percent then $1 million per year could be generated for street repair without increasing the sales tax!

There's no need to increase the expenses of the citizenry. And look how popular the City Council would be for fixing the streets without asking for a sales tax increase.

Dan Mallery

Walla Walla

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