Opinions need not be feared nor suppressed.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

A cautionary tale

They keep playing this election ad on WILK in which one of the challengers to Wilkes-Barre’s mayor claims that we need to stop electing the same politicians who “created this mess.”

My initial thought? Honey, we did as much way back in November of 2003.

She also said some presumptive and insulting thing about voting for the person, not the party. As a registered republican, I will be voting for the democrat who steered us clear of the Sargasso Sea that is Act 47.

The following Scranton Times editorial is a must-read if you’re at all uncertain about where Wilkes-Barre was in 2003, and where it very easily could have gone.

Chris Kelly: Act 47 ruling rips map of recovery plan from city's hands

At the mayoral debate, one of the challengers was surprised to learn that the mayor of this city regularly interacts with the bond insurers and suchlike on Wall Street. Sadly, she said something vague about having the so-called “finance department” deal with that.

The other challenger has repeatedly promised to cut our taxes to the tune of $9 million in lost revenues. Imagine what Wilkes-Barre would be reduced to if our operating budget was slashed from some $35 million to $26 million. Or, rather than imagining, read that Scranton Times piece one more time.

We can hem and haw about the cost of a home security system, but we haven’t had to discuss Act 47, municipal bankruptcy, bond ratings or red ink since January of 2004 when firm financial stewardship came to Wilkes-Barre.

No elected official should go unchallenged on election day. And, as Wilkes-Barre residents, we'd have owed a debt of gratitude to both our republican challenger and our third party challenger if it were not for the FOIA smear campaign somehow passing as campaigning.

But with all due respect, it is this resident’s firm opinion that neither of them are even remotely qualified or knowledgeable enough to lead this city during these tumultuous financial times.


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