The Daley dilema

According to the Sun Times, Mayor Richard Daley is putting a bandage the city budget.  With all the bleeding, a mere bandage will not help.  Of course the mayor does not want to raise taxes, fines, or fees again.  Let the next guy do it.  He is leaving.  Why get people mad at him.  Let the city council do it.  It is all they are good for anyway.  Heaven forbid they actually read the budget.

The city budget can be cut by around 25% without affecting essential core services- the only ones that count.  Waste, fraud, corruption, and mismanagement cost the city 500 million dollars a year.  Payroll- and employee benfits eat a good chunk of that money.  One would think with more technology, administrative positions and clerical jobs could be cut.  Like they do in private industry.

Then there are the management posiitons.  Layers on layers of bureaucracy.  Commissioners, deputy commissioners, deputy deputy commissioners…  All these people do is go from meeting to meeting, to lunch, to meetings and one last meeting- accomplishing little.  They are the meeting people.  Each one has a staff too.  They prepare the meeting agendas.

The procurement system could be streamlined and operated more efficiently.  Currently, it spends most of its time vetting compliance of myriad frivolous ordinances than it does getting the best deal- lowest bid- on contractors and vendors.  These ordinances are only widow dressing- politically palatable appeasements to certain groups to make them feel good.  They are waste.

Making the city a more business friendly place would help boost revenues and create private sector jobs.  Forget that!  Too many people, including the part-time aldermen would be affected.  There is just oo much power and graft involved.

The list can go on.  The city is in bad shape because it wastes more money every year.  Unless that changes, the bleeding will turn into an aneurysm.  Then, all the fee, fine, and tax increases in the world will not help. 


About Peter V. Bella

Peter V. Bella is a passionate cook and photographer. Mr. Bella started cooking as a child with his parents. He has taken professional courses through the years. Mr. Bella a a freelance photojournalist and writer based in Chicago.
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