Walker’s Budget at Work in Waukesha

The people of Waukesha are going to get what they voted for with Walker’s new budget.  Let’s look at some of the fun stuff that we who live in the Land of Mordor (with lawns) have to look forward to.

First, there’s the new garbage fee.  In order to cover some of the gap, a $136 annual fee was proposed to cover costs including recycling.  But some alderman don’t support the fee, they think we need to cut, cut, cut!  And in a very non-scientific poll on Patch, a 60/40 margin prefers to cut more services rather than raise taxes or implement the fee.  Way to go, Waukesha!  So what are we looking at cutting in the City of Waukesha to save the $2.7 million (assuming we don’t get the garbage fee approved)?

  • Cut an open police officer position
  • Eliminate most police overtime
  • Reduce the replacement rate for obsolete police radios
  • Delay purchase of a new ambulance
  • Reduced road salt purchase to levels which won’t last the season
  • Two new police cars cancelled
  • Other unfilled positions left unfilled
  • Asphalt grinder cancelled
  • Parks & Rec vehicle cancelled
I suppose we should be happy we aren’t laying people off (yet).  And this, of course, doesn’t include the draconian cuts the Waukesha city schools are facing.  Yay, Waukesha!

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5 thoughts on “Walker’s Budget at Work in Waukesha

  1. I’m glad you joined Blogging Blue, Phil. And it’s so great to have a fellow liberal blogger and partner in crime here in Waukesha.
    Wonder Twin Powers activate!

  2. Other than Skimping on Salt I see no real problems with those cuts. Has every employee in Waukesha agreed to accept Walkers Act 10 parameters? If not they should re-open contracts or just voluntarily offer the 5.% and the new Health Care parameters. If not there is NOTHING stopping them from offering even greater contributions to health care or up to the full pension contribution at 11.6%. Surely there is at least ONE job that could be cut..even just one? Or try merging some Govt. functions with Waukesha County and City. I’m sure just like every other City in this State the counties have levels of overlap. Parks for instance. Human resources, Tax collection, Sheriff/ Police and how many shiny fire engines that are almost never actually used in Fires are still fully operational and were replaced prematurely. Also check into Double dipping and excess overtime abuse. How many sick/ personal days are current staffers eligible for. I’m sure there will be a few hundred thousand to a few million is still waiting to be found and save the taxpayers money..and get more for the taxpayers money. Govt. is not a jobs program. Deliver the services to the citizens at the best possible price to the taxpayer.

    1. So when the crime rate rises because we’ve cut a full time law enforcement position and eliminated (or severely curtailed) overtime, I’ll remember your comments.

      Have the unions in Waukesha “accepted” act 10? I don’t know. I hope not.

      As for merging functions, I agree that there are certainly redundancies that can be explored. Frankly, moving here from Virginia, I find Wisconsin’s division of village, town, city and county somewhat rigid. Combining them should be a viable solution and I personally don’t understand why it’s not being pursued. Clearly there are savings to be had.

      But your question

      how many shiny fire engines that are almost never actually used in Fires are still fully operational and were replaced prematurely

      is akin to the question “have you stopped beating your wife yet,” in that it presumes a problem in the context of the question.

      And sick time and personal days are part of the employment agreement so what’s your point? You’re proposing to take them away? Would you do that to private sector employees? I don’t think so.

      Your assertion that “Govt. is not a jobs program” implies that I or others have said it is. It’s no more a “jobs program” than working for GE or QuadGraphics. It’s employment, like any other employment, no more no less. Public employees deserve no more or no less respect in their occupation than anyone else. Presuming that they are somehow beneath private sector employees is unwarranted and disrespectful.

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