Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Right Call...

Grand Island's Unions rejected the plot by our Mayor and City Manager to save face and $150K with a 2 day furlough of city employees...a last ditch attempt to make up for this years $2M budget shortfall.  

I am no fan of Unions...although sometimes I feel they are necessary for safety and work environment issues...and this time I think they...the union...made the right decision to say no.  It isn't the city's rank and file that has pushed Grand Island over the debt precipice is our city leaders..Mayor Hornady and previous mayors...council members and city management.  

Why should the men and women out patrolling our streets...putting out our fires...maintaining the streets..and making sure our toilet doesn't back up into our basements etc. pay the price for a bunch of legacy and spend bums?  The $150K is a pittance when compared to the frivoulous spending by our current and past...and I use the term loosely..."city leaders."   There are other cuts that can be made....dump the money pit Shooting Park...increase specific user fees...e.g. golf course...Events Center...maybe plant a few less trees and flowers in the parks this year.  The furlough idea is a attempt by the Mayor to shift the blame away from her and her pals.

The sad thing is...the City's cost of hosting the State Fair has not been realized yet.  A $2M shortfall this year...a projected $3M shortfall already in next years budget...wait for the bills to show up in the 2011-12 budget...we ain't seen nothing yet GI.  The previous Mayor promised our property taxes would go down with the sales tax he had to have...he was right...he just didn't tell us the property tax cut would be short-lived. 

I support the Unions decision on this one...but don't expect much more because I think our city workforce is well taken care of.   Almost forgot...we shouldn't let our county leadership off the hook either...their spending habits also helped put us in the mess we are in.   

Monday, April 26, 2010

Wind Power Coming To Nebraska...

Although the caption says "fatal"...the vulture did survive the fall initially.  Another video shows it with a badly broken wing and barely able to walk.  A fellow captured it and put it in a box but it did not say whether the bird survived or not.  Now...back to Nebraska...Picture an early spring morning with a shroud of low clouds and fog draped over the landscape...a mix of low flying geese...cranes and Whoopers bucking a northeast wind at about 200 feet.  Uh..oh...wind farm. 

Some say the environmental impact statements for wind farms have a tendency to conveniently ignore local migration patterns and endangered species.  I guess we will see how well Nebraska does as time goes by.  For the record...I am not a tree hugger by any stretch of the imagination...I do take issue with pink elephant technology though...which I believe wind power is.  This pig in a poke would not fly without subsidies and special tax considerations.  Tells me right there that we the people...while we might feel a warm fuzzy thinking we are lessening our dependence on foreign oil and the evil twins coal and nuclear energy...we still get left with immature technology and a healthy removal of the funds from our wallets and purses. 

What's The Deal 10/11???

For months now...mainly since the transition to HD/Digital mandated by government and the television manufacturers association retirement fund...our nightly viewings of the local CBS affiliate from Lincoln have been an exercise in frustration at times. 

It seems...more often than with the other local networks...the Demon Pixel Pixies come to life and dump their disruptive pixelation dust on our TV's.  Last night the screen pixelated then went black on all our sets with only audio...the straw that broke the camel's back.  When this first began I thought the problem was mine...had the cable guys out...they checked the signal...upgraded what needed upgraded to where our home was "optimally tweeked" to receive a good signal. 

I called our provider the Evil Charter Communications and got nowhere with a nice lady but did find out that this was a "network problem"...not theirs...where have I heard that line before?  Obviously I have not been the only one that has complained.  I then asked to speak to a supervisor or maybe even the corporate President.  She said the highest I could go up in the Charter phone tree was her supervisor...too bad the CP doesn't take calls.  

Anyway...Joe the Cable Supervisor...sorry Larry...came on the line and read me the same script.  I told him that obviously 10/11 doesn't care or they would have fixed the problem by now and that my not providing a service I am paying lots of hard earned money for.  I went on to tell him that having lived in western Nebraska for almost 15 years...the Good Charter out there...the same company as his...was aware that the local affiliates in Scottsbluff offered a poor signal and hence the Good Charter of the west brought in the Denver affiliates who offered a better signal.  I suggested the Evil Charter in central Nebraska do the same...bring in another CBS affiliate that provides a quality signal until 10/11 can deliver the goods.  

Joe said he would notify the network and gave me a ticket number and said that the problem will be investigated and repaired within 24 to 48 hours.  I am visualizing Ken Siemek with his electronic analyzer looking for bugs in his weather machine right now.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

They Shoot Porkers Don't They???

Yet the illegals have "free range" in Isla de Grande.

Do It For The Young People...

Our high speed sausage stuffing Unicameral continues to propose bills like Hell is on their heels.  One of the current bills oozing from their well-worn bill stuffer is LB861 ...a bill allowing local swill joints throughout the state one more hour of revelry before they flash the lights and announce last call.  A myriad of the Unicameral's finest are in favor of this bill...Senator Colby Coash...the same guy traumatized by the goings on in Whiteclay...part-time Sea Captain/Party Barge Operator and boat salesman Kenny Rogert...and former bar owner Brenda Council.  Some of their primary reasons include "doing it for the young people of Nebraska lacking things to do"...countering the competition from Iowa where bars are open until 2 am...and to keep the bar tabs and tax revenue in Nebraska. 

They honestly believe if they keep Nebraska bars open another hour there will be less drunks on the road racing to Iowa at 12:45 am...they are right...but in reality they are only forestalling the race by an hour and keeping it in Nebraska.  What great deductive reasoning our friends in the Unicameral possess.  What a love-fest.  Here's what central Nebraskans think.