Mayor Ravenstahl's 2010 budget relies on $15 million mostly from yet-to-be-specified fees on non-profits, targeted somewhat narrowly at the health care and higher education sectors.
Here is my opinion on that: he's only asking for $15 million? What a sleimo! He should clearly be asking for at least $30 million. The Pittsburgh Promise is noble but cannot balance gaping healthcare-sized, healthcare-shaped holes in municipal and even school district budgets. (Trib, Adam Brandolph; P-G, Rich Lord)
And then there is Allegheny County:
Onorato on Tuesday once again proposed no tax increase in his budget address to County Council. But his plan also includes an attempt to stabilize the budget long-term starting in 2011. To do it he's relying in part on increases in casino money and sales taxes, and new income from gas drilling and nonprofit contributions. (Trib, Tim Puko)
Emphasis mine. Further down:
Onorato said he plans to cut $5 million more from county operations by 2011, though he has yet to decide how. (ibid)
Hm. A work in progress, eh?
Meanwhile a new State of Pennsylvania tax on museums, theaters, and zoos is occurring. You know, "cultural venues". But not sporting events. We like sports and we don't care who knows. (Trib, Pierce and Stiles)
Pittsburgh City Council votes preliminarily in favor of Councilman Dowd's G-20 fact-finding committee idea, but:
Amendments made today removed references to council's ability to subpoena people and documents, but "didn't really change it dramatically," said Councilman Patrick Dowd, author of the resolution. (P-G, Rich Lord)
I assume that HRC § 312 would still technically be triggered and in effect, though, correct? Well then, jolly good show! Much like local Congressman Tim Murphy (R-South Hills), who voted constantly to support all sorts of Kucinichian and Waxmanian investigations into President George Bush (R-Sesame Street), I believe that insistent curiosity and due diligence are healthful for the populace. It has less to do with a hunger to see Mayor Steelershizzle be given an Atomic wedgie in Market Square at this time, but rather establishing the principle and practices surrounding Councilmatic investigations. The experience will be a boon for future civics. Three cheers for the 2009 City Council, or for the great bulk of it anyway!
The Post-Gazette has nailed it of course, but this comment #30 by e$ is interesting regardless. It at least makes clear that the dance event was not, strictly speaking, a flash mob according to the Wikipedians, and they would know about exactly these kinds of things. (P-G Edit Board)
Remember I mentioned the Stigletz / Sarkozy economic indicator? Well, I forgot to mention one notable rationale for it: GDP only values capital-producing labor, whereas much of the work necessary to build a stable, thriving civilization goes into child- and family-rearing. From a feminist perspective such metrics as quote-unquote "leisure time" are productive toward more accurately assessing the capacity of women's value to national strength given their historic "double burden" of family-nurturing as well as bacon home-bringing.