Sunday, April 26, 2009

Time to buy the man a calculator

Just catching up on this...Last week, the Sentinel and Enterprise ran a story on the trouble facing the city of Leominster if the cuts proposed in the Legislature’s budget make it into law. My jaw just about hit the floor when I saw this quote from newly elected state Rep. Dennis Rosa:
One area Mazzarella said he is watching is the cut in Lottery aid to cities and towns.

Mazzarella said the cuts should be equitable across the state based on the loss in revenue to the state Lottery.

State Rep. Dennis Rosa, D-Leominster, also said he's watching the Lottery money.

"I'm trying to figure out how much of a percentage we got cut compared with other communities," he said.
Huh? This is the budget put out by the legislative body of which you are a member and you don’t know how Leominster’s budget cuts compare to other communities?

Well, I do. Because I looked up the proposed 2010 budget, the final 2009 budget, and took out a scratch pad and a calculator and did the math. It literally took me all of 15 minutes to figure out that all of the communities that I care about received the same percentage cut to their budget.

First, here are the figures from FY2009 budget, the proposed FY2010, and the cuts. All numbers taken from the links on the Legislature’s web site, which must have been difficult for the rep or his staff to locate:
                FY09 (Actual)   FY10 (Prop)     Deficit        Change
Leominster $7,111,354 $4,821,700 $2,289,654 -32%
Sterling $ 856,049 $ 579,472 $ 276,577 -32%
Clinton $2,754,261 $1,938,212 $ 816,049 -32%
Lancaster $1,030,300 $ 697,426 $ 332,874 -32%
There you are. All of the communities in the No Drumlins region received 32% funding cuts. Rep. Rosa, you can thank me later for doing the tough work.

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