Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Give the money back, Mayor Jim Newberry

News coverage and commentary about the current pension discussion in Frankfort has been pretty lousy, but the idea that city newspapers are going to start drumming up little ditties about how much their town is going to "get" or "save" as a result of HB 1 is false, misleading, ridiculous, stupid, irresponsible, asinine, absurd, and just plain wrong.

In today's "breaking news" feature, the Lexington Herald Leader crows without attribution that Lexington is going to "save" $1.4 million in the passage of House Bill 1. Reporter Michelle Ku must get pretty excited when her credit card issuers offer her the ability to skip a payment because she has been "such a good customer." That is exactly what is happening with this current scheme.

And it sounds good for Mayor Jim Newberry's finance commissioner to say they aren't going to immediately just run out and spend the money. Lexington taxpayers should demand Mayor Newberry take a stand for fiscal responsibility by refusing the loan. He would show leadership by encouraging other mayors and county judge executives to do the same. "Pay me now" is always cheaper than "pay me next year."