You can read the Enquirer's report on the budget passed here. I've had a fairly well-lathered froth worked up since I heard about today's shenanigans. The budget--which is balanced through a combination of raising parking ticket fines (which will likely generate far less revenue than Council thinks) and raiding the City's version of its "rainy day" fund--includes:
- almost a half million dollars in non-negotiated cost-of-living increases;
- an additional $5,300 for each Council office;
- over $150,000 that permits the City to claim that it's "green"; and
- $40,000 for neighborhood gardens.
Supporting the budget were Cranley, Crowley, Cole, Thomas, and Qualls. I won't vote for any of them (yes, I realize some are term-limited anyhow) in 2009. And as far as I'm concerned, Qualls's mayoral aspirations just jumped the shark.
A prediction: Council's short-sightedness today will place the City in a budget nightmare next year, with the newly-elected Council forced to make significant revisions to the second year of this two-year budget.