Tuesday, April 21, 2009

City Hall doing even LESS work to examine budget this year!

As if we needed any further proof that the City Council has no inclination to do its statutory job of thoroughly examining the budget, and providing a proper check and balance to the power of the Mayor, we get the schedule for hearings on this year's budget. This year they are currently planning on having less than half the number of hearings that they did last year. You read that correctly, in these dire economic times when President Obama is getting together with his staff to try and save $100 million dollars (a mere drop in the federal spending) our City Council is examining half as many departments as we did last year.

They may try and spin this as if they are going to examine other more important and bigger spending departments more thoroughly but I think the reality is that the Mayor who controls many of the City Councilors doesn't want to give renegade councilors Flaherty and Yoon a chance to make political hay. Whatever the reason, it is obvious that once again a thorough vetting of where our money is being spent is not going to happen.

Below is a list of the hearings last year and "x" marks next to the departments that will get hearings this year.

HearingsFY10 Hearings FY 2009

-------------Arts, Tourism & Special Events
x------------Assessing Department
-------------Auditing Department
x------------Boston Redevelopment Authority
x------------BPS: Capital Budget & Facilities
-------------BPS: Family & Community Engagement
x------------BPS: FY09 Overview
X------------BPS: School Assignment & Transportation
-------------BPS: School Safety
x------------BPS: Teaching & Learning
-------------Budget Management
x------------CFO: FY09 Overview /Revenue Overview/Boston About Results*
-------------City Clerk
-------------Consumer Affairs & Licensing
-------------Elderly Commission
-------------Emergency Shelter
-------------Environment Department
-------------Finance Commission
x------------Fire Department
-------------Graphic Arts Department
x------------Inspectional Services Department
-------------Integovernmental Relations
-------------Law Department
-------------Licensing Board
x------------Neighborhood Development
-------------Neighborhood Services
-------------Office of Administration & Finance
-------------Office of Budget Management
-------------Office of Civil Rights
-------------Office of Emergency Prep.
-------------Office of Human Resources
-------------Office of Labor Relations
-------------Office of New Bostonians
-------------Office of Public Information
-------------Office of the Mayor
x------------Parks & Recreation
x------------Property & Construction Management
x------------Public Health Commission
x------------Public Works / Central Fleet / Snow Removal
-------------Purchasing Division
-------------Small & Local Business Program
-------------Treasury Department
-------------Veteran's Services
-------------Women's Commission
-------------Youth Fund / Summer Jobs

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