Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Bits and pieces

During my ice-pick-in-the-face sinus infection of the last few days, I missed a lot. Am trying to wade through a couple hundred emails and stuff. Don'tcha hate being away from the computer for too long?

What's this about a Fox News guy becoming Press Secretary? Didn't see that comin'. Heh. They're having fun trotting out the fact that Snow has been critical of this administration in the past. I expect that'll change immediately.

I missed linking to last week's carnival. So here's the link: No-W-here. It's the very first time something I made for a banquet was pushed behind the flower arrangement. Nice job, Anonymous B. They still need carnival hosts for the second half of May and all of June- email the carnies to get a prime spot.

There's a comet out there! Well, parts of one anyway. Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 broke up eleven years ago (citing creative differences) but some of the larger pieces should be visible through medium-sized telescopes. I wonder if our telescope qualifies as medium-sized or not?

New Quinnipiac poll out today, showing the honeymoon's over for Corzine. 91% of us know the budget problems are serious, and 87% of us realize that the budget was inhereted by the gov, but we clearly don't like to pay taxes to take care of it, nor do we want to see services like schools cut because of it. Very important in this poll: 65% of us would support an increase in state taxes (v. property) to ballence a budget, but 60% of us think it's a bad idea to raise the state sales tax to do it. (I guess we're still holding out for money to fall from the sky.)


Brenda said...

Maybe Corzine could ask someone to collect all of the expensive construction equipment and barricades littered throughout the state on projects that have remained apparently abandoned and unfinished. Maybe they could yard sale that excess equipment, the expensive artwork hanging up in the turnpike authority building (it's rumored)and sell some pork from the pork palace as a side dish to raise the funds to fill the budget gap.

Sharon GR said...

I'm sure the construction equipment and baracades are accounted for in the DOT's budget. The equipment isn't excess, it's on projects, and selling it off means even less chance of ever getting those projects finished now that DOT funding is figured out and construction can continue.

Selling old stuff is a one-shot deal- which means non-recurring revenues, not actual systemic change. It also brings in a few million (I've never been to the Turnpike Authority building, but I doubt they have a dozen Van Goghs in there), but that doesn't fill a $4.5 billion dollar gab between spending and revenue. Not even close. The fact that we've stopped depending so much on one-shot revenue fixes is the main reason that the Wall Street types (the ones that set our bond rating and therefore the amount of interest we pay on our debt) have praised the plan and may, possibly!, raise our bond rating out of the gutter.

What's the Pork Palace? You don't mean Drumthwacket, do you? The state can't even pay to keep the place up. It was restored by private funding, just like the governor's schools.

Corzine is doing some selling off of assets, though, such as auctioning 10% of the vehicles in the treasury fleet as part of cost-cutting measures. Cars have maintainence costs so these do have some effect on the long-term budget.

If we don't need it, it should go, but just as you can't plan to pay your mortgage selling off excess groceries, you can't plan a budget selling off rumored artwork.

Bob said...

I guess we're still holding out for money to fall from the sky.

There is another solution . . . cut spending.

Just because the Supreme Court thinks it can legislate does not mean it can. What if the legislature refused to spend the money Poritz et al. want?