March came in like a lion and went out like one, too, honey bunch, and April doesn’t seem to be much better. As Iyam scribing this week’s missive to yew, at least five inches of snow are falling outside and it’s April 2. The rest o’ the week is gonna be one continuous rain “event” as the weather forecasters like to say nowadays. Something tells Cobina that spring might be here on the calendar, but we ain’t gonna see real warmth around here for weeks. The trees are beginning to bud, but it might be May before we see anything resembling leaves.
Here in the Asylum by the Sea things are really percolating. Yew can tell it’s an even year cuz all the candidates for all the state districks are beginning to line up in both parties. Incumbents are looking fer another term, whilst there are others who are either threatening primaries or those looking to unseat those incumbents.
The big announcement came a couple weeks back when Gayle Slossberg announced that she ain’t gonna seek another term as state senator from the 14th district. That means things are gonna be wide-open for that seat. And, the fack that most of it is in Milford means that it could go over to the GOP as that city has a perty effective Republican Party, whilst this city has a perty anemic one. It’ll be interesting to see how that election shakes out.
Keep yore eyes open on this year’s races. Cobina has a feeling that some big things might be happening. The natives are restless, and maybe some shaking up has to occur. We shall see.
Will it be pistols at dawn or dull swords? That is the query that is being asked – rather tongue in check – concerning Edward Granfield and John Carrano. Both have been mentioned as good fits for the chairmanship of the city’s newly appernted Charter Revision Commission. Of course, the two are good friends and having a ball over the fack that both have been put in the running. So, they’ve decided a good, old fashioned duel might be the way to go.
I wonder effen there’s ever been a duel on the Green in our city’s history. Not really an English thing, though there have been famous duals in our history. Maybe we should git John Purmont on the case.
Tennyrate, whatever is decided concerning the Charter Commish, it looks like the panel is gonna have its work cut out for it. There is every indication that, unlike commissions past, there is a general feeling the city charter needs a good look-see and maybe some big changes made in how the city does business.
Cobina wouldn’t be surprised effen terms and term limits are part of the overall change package – and might even git passed. Also, there are rumblings that an overhaul of the City Council is needed. That could be a good thing if people really pay attention to how things happen now and how they can be improved. Cobina has always thought we had to do two things, improve the election of council members and increase minority representation in order to make real legislation and compromise happen. We shall see.
Once the chairmanship and organization of the commish takes place, the real work can happen. It has a mandate to git things done by July 2019, and there is no reason to think that can’t happen.
Because of the date of the public hearing, we weren’t able to talk much about it last week. Sammy Bluejay was perched outside Bailey Middle School and told Cobina that Education was a big part of the discussions by people who attended. Sammy and I talked about the way the Board of Ed spends its kopecks and we still think effen they do some culling of the herd they can have more pennies to spend.
As yew know, Cobina has been mentioning the school system spends more than $1 million on middle management, specifically coordinators in various subjecks. It is no secret that the school system has pared down its schools in order to save money. Maybe it’s time to pare down administrators – not teachers. The system has nine coordinators at six-figger salaries. Add benefits and it’s more than $1 million. Give a stipend to department heads and maybe one teacher per school and yew can have coordination at probably one-third the cost. That gives the system a few hundred thousand to spend.
It seems like a reasonable suggestion and not one that Cobina came up with on her own. That’s probably the reason nobody will consider it. It makes too much sense. Besides, most people in that kind of situation are looking to pad their resumes so they can move to bigger and better things. Let’s give ‘em a push in that direction.
Nelly Nuthatch sez that the council is beginning to look at the budget and will through the next six weeks. Like I’ve been tellin’ yew for the last couple o’ weeks, there ain’t much the council is gonna be able to do. Nelly sez that some of the members are even admitting that getting together is a good thing, but with the Municipal Accountability Review Bored (MARB) any and all decisions made by the council are subject to its OK.
And, again, in order to make any changes the council needs nine votes to pass a change on the 13-member panel. That’s a tough road to hoe. Sooooo, don’t expeck too many alterations and probably a pro forma review of the documents. I don’t know what the local watering holes are wagering as far as odds, but Cobina wouldn’t be surprised effen this budget goes through with Nary a jot or tittle changed over the next six weeks.
Iva Lootey sez the city is gonna give some taxpayers around the city “the boot.” No, we don’t mean throw them outta their domiciles, though that might be preferable to some. Nope, the boot is gonna be for those who ain’t paid their car taxes. It’s an on-again, off-again, program the city has used over the last decade or so, and brings in some kopecks.
City Hall has jest announced a new program, and whilst Iva wasn’t sure of all the details, it’s gotta be sending a cold chill down the spines of a few people about the berg. We shall see what transpires.
As I said to yew before, herroner is gonna be the heavy in all this. Administrations over the last several decades have “kicked the can” down the road letting someone else take care of things. Well, we have run outta road, and somebody is gonna hafta make the difficult decisions. Sooooo, herroner is the Big Bad Wolf and doing what others wouldn’t do.
Effen she has the stomach for it, she’s gonna be risking popularity for good decision-making. Most politicos are only interested in the next election. We shall see how things shake out.
With that bit o’ chatter, I’ll close this time till next, mitt luff und kizzez,