Lincoln City Budget 2011: What budget cuts would you make?

Dear Lincoln Resident,

Many of you (over 2000 and counting!) have taken Lincoln’s online survey. (If you have not, please do! You can take it by going to lincoln.ne.gov and clicking on “Taking Charge Public Budget Survey” in the center box of the page.)

One common comment on the online survey is that residents would like to look at other programs for budget cuts. In preparation for the Community Conversation to be held on June 18th, we’ve set up this mini-site to take your suggestions for other program cuts that might help to balance the city budget.

Go to http://lincoln.ne.gov/city/mayor/takingcharge/program-prioritization.htm to see a full list of city programs, and the costs associated with each. This list is sortable by program type, cost, and “Tier” (lower Tiers designate higher-priority programs). The list also identifies which programs are already under discussion and on the online survey for potential cuts.

Note that, for the most part, Tier 0 (mandated) and Tier 1 (highest priority) programs, cannot be considered for cuts. However, there are more than 100 Tier 2 and Tier 3 programs that you may wish to consider.

Below, we’ve already listed those programs that are on the city survey. We invite you to suggest other programs that you would prefer to see cut, or vote on other people’s suggestions, here.

We will then discuss some of the more popular suggestions at the Community Conversation event on June 18th, 2011.

Note: If you would like to attend the June 18th event, indicate your willingness on the online survey (accessible from lincoln.ne.gov), or you can email ppc@nebraska.edu to see if there is still room at the event. We have a limited number of spaces available and are filling them on a first-come first-served basis. You may also wish to discuss these issues at the discussion web site: http://takingcharge2011discussion.iforums.us/

Thanks for your help!

The City of Lincoln

The Tier 2 or Tier 3 program that I think could be cut or reduced is...

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  1. Nothing. Ounce of prevention

    Sometimes you have to pay higher taxes in the short run for a better long term payoff. Raise taxes if needed short term. Require each department to submit ideas in reducing future costs. Could the police department cut costs in ten years if we spent a little more on keeping kids in school now? Could we plant lower maintance city trees that can still withstand the snow? Would it help the fire department to have Smokey the Bear come to town and tell people to stop throwing lit cigarettes on the ground?

    1 vote
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  2. Take a long hard look at administrative costs.

    Every time there is a need to cut funds every tax supported entity (it seems like) hones in on things that are sensitive to the tax payers. Look around at all of the people behind the scenes. When private enterprise has to cut costs they can not cut back on service provided to their customers, but have to cut costs internally. Doing more for less sometimes has to happen.

    35 votes
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  3. Stop spending money on bogus surveys.

    Instead of conducting surveys that are unscientific and easy to manipulate conduct a scientific poll using a large sample and really find out what the citizens want from their government.

    31 votes
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  4. We should be allowed to consider taxes and their sources

    I am aware that Lincoln's sources of income are sales tax, property tax, wheel tax, impact fees, water and sewer fees (tax). There may be an occupation tax? The wheel tax is divided so 48% goes to new construction and only 9% to residential rehab. That ratio must be changed so our aging streets are maintained in a cost effective manner. New construction can get their money from increased impact fees. The same argument can be for made water and sewer.

    14 votes
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  5. stop water flouridation program

    water flouridation is currently getting a lot of attention for the health problems associated with the current lack of dossage control. The government has reduced the "safe" amounts and I vote to fully remove this cost from our city bill. I have already emailed the water company addressing my concerns and I also asked a question that has yet to be answered, "how much does our city pay for adding this questionable "drug" to our water system?" Please research this topic that is gaining national attention and is being removed by more and more cities nationwide. Be pro-active Lincoln and…

    5 votes
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  6. 38 votes
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  7. 24 votes
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  8. Athletics Section of Parks & Recreation. Also - Planning Section of Parks & Recreation.

    The Athletics Programs could be turned over to the YMCA, as they already duplicate many of the same programs, plus the Adult Athletic Sports have many less number of teams compared to past years - maybe the staff programming is not as good as the past?
    The Planning Section - couldn't the work they do be done by private contractors?

    2 votes
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  9. 23 votes
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  10. Energy conservation

    Reduced lighting along areas that oversaturated with light, for example 84th St or O St. Reduce utility costs.

    4 votes
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  11. Economic development

    Stop giving tax breaks to businesses.

    4 votes
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  12. 16 votes
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  13. 16 votes
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  14. 7 votes
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  15. 9 votes
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  16. 8 votes
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  17. 10 votes
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  18. 3 votes
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  19. 3 votes
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  20. snow plowing

    I dont think this needs to be done as often

    5 votes
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Lincoln City Budget 2011: What budget cuts would you make?

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