I made myself a promise that I would sit back and watch Dave and give him some time to catch on to being an elected official. After all I did spend a lot of time with him after the election discussing various aspects of county government and answering his questions. He has been to newly elected county officials training and new County Judge training, so you figure he would have learned a little something.
I started this blog because I wanted to try to keep folks up with what is going on in Milam County. Lately a lot of my blogs have been about what is going on in Austin, but truth of the matter is that what’s going on in Austin is going to eventually affect the goings on in Milam County.
With all that being said I have reached the stage with Dave and his comments that has me saying in the immortal words of that famous sailor, “That’s all I can stands, I can’t stands no more!”
Now do not get me wrong. I have no ill feelings toward Dave himself, we have actually partied together. Some of you might have seen our picture on Face book. I do however; have a great concern for Milam County government and how he is misstating the facts.
His memos recommending all elected officials come to the Commissioners Court Meeting as it should be considered their staff meeting is bunk. Commissioners Court is for county business not a staff meeting. If he wants to conference with all of the elected officials he should set workshops, and invite the elected officials to join in. By the way Dave, elected officials are not your staff members.
His recent dog and pony shows during Commissioners Court meetings I think are aimed at his solution to what he perceived as a transparency issue. Transparency should involve a clear and realistic view of what is going on. His power point presentations intended to impress the public with his vast knowledge of the county budget are proof of just how clueless he really is.
Take his attempt on Monday February 14th to demonstrate that the county had collected only 36.40% of the 2010 ad valorem taxes. Dave check your figures. Truth is the county has collected over 80% of the 2010 revenue from property taxes.
If he wanted to report the truth he would have told the audience about the over two million collected for 2010 last November when many of us paid our half payments. Yes Dave that does count for this year even though it was paid last year and therefore shows up as revenue for 2010, the year it was collected.
The facts he presents need to be presented with a discussion of the factors that reveal the actual details of the information he is trying to present. While trying to make correlations to a twelve month budget makes sense it does not reveal the truth in all areas of county government budgeting.
Take indigent health care for an example. His example shows a monthly budget of 1,666.67 as 1/12th of the total for the 2011 budget year. He fails to explain that there are only nine months left in the Indigent Health Care budget cycle as it operates along the lines of many state agencies on a September 1 through August 31 and not the county’s January 1 through December 31 budget timeline.
By the way Dave as I tried to tell you, and I know the Indigent Health Care coordinator told you Indigent Health is one of those state unfunded mandates and is funded by a set percent of the gross general tax levy. It is not a revenue producing item for the county, and therefore should not appear as a revenue source.
As I mentioned earlier I have no ill will toward Dave and as a matter of fact I felt that he could probably do a good job of serving the people of Milam County. After all he served as Mayor of Cameron and I had the opportunity to work with him on several projects in the past. However, as time goes on I am beginning to reconsider my thoughts as he truly does seem to be clueless.