City Councilor Blake Caravati, who recently announced that he’s retiring from Council, is sounding mighty feisty on the topic of the budget. In today’s Daily Progress, John Yellig writes that Caravati said: “What I’m saying is, don’t be bellyaching about ‘we’ve got all this new money and we want to cut rates to reduce the amount of money,’ and then not talk about services. We all do it, and I’m saying I don’t have to worry about it this year, so I’m going to raise hell about it.”
Caravati is particularly peeved with lone Republican Councilor Rob Schilling, who has not participated in the budget process in the past, and has also voted against every budget in his single term on Council. “Rob doesn’t want to argue about it because he’s an ideologue…. I’m not a lame duck. I’m a wounded duck. And you know what happens when animals are wounded.”
I have to admit that I’m a bit puzzled by Caravati’s comments. Given that assessments are up 18.8% this year, a properly-crafted rate cut wouldn’t need to result in a decrease in funding of city services, as has been done in past years. I, too, deplore passing tax cuts without spending cuts, but it seems to me that, in this case, we can have our cake and eat it, too, at least rhetorically.