Supervisor Weishan votes against 2011 County Budget and Property Tax Levy
Milwaukee County Supervisor John F. Weishan, Jr., released the following statement responding to the 2011 County Budget adopted Monday night:
“It’s bad déjà vu all over again at the County Board. By approving a scaled back wage and benefit package based on the County Executive’s flawed labor relations strategy, a number of naïve Supervisors are making the same mistakes they did last year. Recycling this playbook will lead to higher property taxes in the future. That’s why I voted against the 2011 budget.
“Last month, the County was found guilty of bad faith labor negotiation practices. With Monday’s action, we are repeating the same mistake. I agree that we need to achieve concessions from our workforce, but we need to seek these changes in an appropriate manner. Dictating these changes in a budget, without engaging in any good faith bargaining, only sets us up for failure. Next spring, we will be forced to cut mass transit and other vital programs. We tried this flawed strategy in the 2010 County Budget last year. It’s now mid-November, and we’re staring at an $8 million shortfall. I still haven’t seen the County Executive’s corrective action plan to fill this gap.
“Monday’s 2011 Budget Adoption meeting, which started at 8:30 a.m., finally wrapped up around 11:30 p.m. This included nearly six hours of wasted time crafting amendments that don’t solve our long-term problems and may not survive veto override votes. Even worse, these budget ‘fixes’ were hammered out behind closed doors, violating the public’s right to open government. I was not part of these meetings. Instead, I led the charge for meeting in open session and recessing our meeting by 11 p.m.”