Lopsided Service

Lots of exciting news coming out of Marion County on the tax-front this morning.

In short, libraries and colleges are spending way too much money on useless administrators, and then they wonder where there money went. Oh, and IndyGo broke an axel wheel. And colleges are full of “mindless cheerleaders”.

In unanimously approving its $37.9 million budget Monday, the Indianapolis-Marion County Public Library board of trustees also put in motion a shortfall appeal that — if approved — will increase some property taxes.

IndyGo, another agency dependent on property taxes, also adopted a 2011 budget Monday, and it, too, will pursue a shortfall appeal as expected.

If approved by the City-County Council, the appeals would bring in $1.8 million for the library and $1.5 million for IndyGo. But for most homeowners, the increase combined would be only a couple of bucks.

I know it’s only a couple of bucks, but these problems aren’t going away and it defeats the purpose of a cap if you can just walk back to the council and say, “More please!”. They’re already talking about doing it again next year, just because they can. I was at the Irvington Library yesterday and it was mostly kids talking in circles and adults looking at Facebook and YouTube. Abdul over at RTV6 noticed the same thing. That can happen at a Starbucks. Libraries need to be rethinking their purpose in the 21st century. And why did they cut hours and services BEFORE looking at the problem they knew they had…

With one in four library employees in management positions, Torres called for eliminating high-paying, duplicate jobs to avoid reducing the library’s customer services.

“There is a need for discussion,” he said. “It’s a mess.”

I see no need for discussion. You’re top-heavy. Cut it out.

And, in further proof why this man is my hero, Gov. Daniels told Indiana’s public universities, namely IU and Purdue, they were acting like “mindless cheerleaders“:

Gov. Mitch Daniels told a large group of college trustees Monday that the days of top-heavy campuses — where administrators get the biggest slice of the budget pie — must come to an end.

“You are not there to be a mindless cheerleader,” the governor said. “Administrative costs are rising rapidly, and that is a lopsided way to deliver resources.”

The study blamed the administrative bloat on subsidies from federal and state governments and suggested that reducing subsidies would force schools to operate more efficiently.

“The role of trustee has never been so critical as it is today,” Daniels said. “But I don’t want to see you at the Statehouse asking for more money.

“Please stay back at the school and find ways to be more efficient with those dollars.”

Again, like most things in life, this is not that hard. Any sane organization or company could fix these problems in an afternoon.

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