Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Lancaster firefighters' celebration is short-lived

Remember when we told you about Mayor David Smith of Lancaster? Like the We Are Ohio unions, he told people that Senate Bill 5 wouldn't help save firefighters jobs. He told his constituents that they needed to pay more taxes, instead.
City officials are asking voters on Nov. 8 to approve a 0.25-percentage-point increase in the city income tax for five years, raising it to 2 percent. The increase would generate $2.5 million annually to help balance next year’s budget, Smith has said.

“It’s critical,” Ward said. “If this doesn’t pass, I anticipate city hall having to lay off more firefighters.”
Guess what voters in Lancaster said about raising their taxes? A big fat NO.

LANCASTER, Ohio -- Election Night was big for Lancaster, and voters spoke loud and clear. They don't want new taxes.

All three Lancaster issues, schools, property and income tax requests were all shot down -- and it wasn't close.
The same voters, however, also voted against Issue 2, probably because the union bosses behind "We Are Ohio" told them that voting "no" would keep more firefighters on the job.

The reality of voting "no"? More firefighters will now almost certainly be laid off.
The reality of voting "yes"? The city could've saved well over $1 million, enough to bring back the firefighters who were already laid off previously.

Recall what I said last night.
Voters had three choices: reform, higher taxes or layoffs. Since I see most school levies are failing, it looks like they chose "layoffs". It didn't have to be like this.
Those firefighters celebrated the defeat of Issue 2, and then woke up to the reality that Issue 2 supporters have tried to tell Ohio all along. Voters in Lancaster chose "layoffs".

Of course, SOME of the voters in Lancaster voted for the reform that would've kept more of those firefighters on the job. For them, I suggest a new bumper sticker, inspired by GOHP Blog.

Of course, the union bosses are still celebrating. None of them will lose their jobs.

It didn't have to be like this.

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