City needs to get a grip on its budget problem

In the State of the City address by Mayor Dana Ralph, she acknowledges the annual deficit of $2 million, the Panther Lake annexation dollars going away and the loss of the steamlined sales tax mitigation. All told, this will be a deficit of at least $10 million per year by the year 2020.

Mayor Ralph, I don’t totally blame you. The blame can be shared by all that have been the mayor or City Council members since 2006. By 2008, everyone knew that the laws were going to change about the sales tax problem, the annexation of Panther Lake in 2009 and the careless building of the ShoWare Center.

We’re facing a severe budget crisis by 2020, and you want more money to expand the police department.

Try this, Mayor Ralph and the rest of the Kent City Council. Come up with a viable budget that will solve Kent’s issues before forcing another vote. Yes, I hated to see the par 3 course go, but it was necessary to raise revenue and stop more deficit. In the end, it was for the best.

There might be more city assets that should be looked at and possibly sold. There are other sources of revenue that the city has ignored or chased off.

Mayor Ralph and the City Council members, fix the problems before asking for more money. I’ve been an area resident for over 50 years, and I’m not going away anytime soon. I will commit to calling out all who are the elected officials of Kent until you get the budget under control.

– Rob Flood

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