I am one member of a five person board. The opinions I express on this forum are mine only, and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the Escambia County Staff, Administrators, Employees, or anyone else associated with Escambia County Florida. I am interested in establishing this blog as a means of additional transparency to the public, outreach to the community, and information dissemination to all who choose to look. Feedback is welcome, but because public participation is equally encouraged, appropriate language and decorum is mandatory.
Saturday, July 25, 2009
Finishing the Race Strong for Taxpayers!
The guy in this picture is finishing the race, and he is finishing strong. Finishing a race strong is good.
During our budget meeting the other day I used the analogy of "breaking down before the finish of a marathon" to describe how I felt about all of the hard work we had done over the last year to cut and cut and cut our school district's budget as our state revenues were slashed--only to "break down" at the finish line. Breaking down at the finish line to me means raising the millage tax rate on property owners locally instead of finding the last $2.1 million somewhere else in our budget thereby allowing us to keep the millage rate steady at last years level.
The analogy I used centered around this video from Youtube, that was used in a gatorade commercial about 6 years ago. These folks run 25.99 miles toward the end of a marathon then break down at the finish line. The analogy to me is simple. Looking at all of our tremendous budget ups and downs over the last 12 months--and how we have handled them is the race. the "finish line" in my analogy is the setting of our millage rate for Escambia County Taxpaying property owners. finishing our proposed millage rate and keeping the rate steady at last year's level of 7.72 mills equals finishing the race strong (like the guy in the picture above). We have, as a district acted boldly to balance student needs with budgetary and fiscal austerity. We've gone "364" days, or "26.99 miles"--we are almost at the finish line--but to raise the millage tax rate, after all of the other struggles and sacrifices we have made as a district equals finishing the race like this,
or maybe like this, or perhaps this.
Let's finish this race strong for our taxpayers and cross the finish line strong!