Though it was utterly unannounced, apparently, we Genevans are celebrating solidarity with the citizens of Iraq week because they can’t seem to keep the power on for a full day. Yes! I realize it rained last night and we all know that kind of thing almost never happens!
Let’s all keep our fingers crossed that today will be the day we actually have 24 straight hours of electricity this week. I have the horseshoe and rabbit’s foot out on my desk right now!
Then there was this week’s super-secret special untelevised Geneva City Council meeting.
Well…perhaps I’m exaggerating a wee bit. In any five Monday month, that council inevitably takes advantage of the extra lunar celebration to discuss policy and all sorts of other municipal possibilities.
That extra meeting does include a pre-released agenda, but it’s kind of meaningless because the mayor, city manager and alderman can and will meander through all manner of non-voting municipal material – unfettered by council chamber camera red light.
And on September 29, that glorious group talked about giving the Home Rule referendum another shot.
Of course Mayor Burns and City Manager Mary McKittrick have been salivating over this possibility ever since they cast their long, dark shadows over this fair city of ours. And the sole rationale for their Pavlovian response is they can raise taxes without having to come to the citizens of Geneva first.
When you consider how the mayor and manager got us into a power buying boondoggle and then they just wasted $2 million on sub-standard Prairie Green wetlands improvements, can you imagine what they’d do with almost unilateral levying capability?
To wit! The council couldn’t even make it through that meeting without the possibility of applying that new power rearing its ugly head. Because when that governmental gaggle discussed the prospect of a new city hall (they just love spending our money, don’t they!), 5th Ward Alderman Craig Maladra basically said, “If we pass Home Rule first, we won’t have to go to a referendum for a new building.”
In other words, “Why discuss B when A gives us the power to make B happen without the voters?” Put even more simply, “If you give us the power, we will raise your taxes!”
The good news is, with a population well below the 25,000 mark, Home Rule ain’t gonna happen here without taxpayer consent. And though I often wonder about my fellow Genevan’s capacity to grasp even the simplest of concepts, even I don’t think they’re that stupid.