September 25, 2009

Save the Library! Now on Facebook

In case you missed the news from earlier this week, the City of Troy is facing a projected $22.6 million budget deficit over the next six years.

As a result, the Troy City Council is considering several options, among them to close the Troy Public Library.

In response, Zach Kilgore, a Troy High School student, started a Save the Library! Facebook group. There are already over 300 members. [Update: As of 10 am, September 28, there are over 1,090 members!]

If you are a Facebook user, take a look. The site contains great information about an upcoming City Council meeting, where this issue will be discussed.

Thanks for getting the word out, Zach!

1 comment:

Ed said...

My name is Ed Spillers. I am a Resident and Business Owner in the City of Troy.
As Mr. Szerlag mentioned at the last Council meeting on the 14th, what you decide as a governing body and ultimately what we decide as Residents of Troy to address the City’s Operating Budget shortfall will dictate what the City will look like in the future. My concern is if we do not act correctly two things will be our City’s emanation:

1. We will lose our status as the most livable city and safest city. Be witness to population exodus and even more rapid decline in the Business Sector.
2. We will become a City no longer accountable to the Citizens and see a severe dissolution or worse, loss of the very Services we cherish and what makes Troy unique.

This is now our City’s “Greatest Opportunity”. We face a budget shortfall of 22.6 million that would cripple our abilities to deliver to the citizens of Troy an opportunity to reset the atmosphere for bringing Jobs and sustainable Economic Growth back to the City.

If we are ever to return Troy to its proud stature of being open for business and promoting growth for businesses of all sizes and services, we must make the hard decisions. We cannot stand at the threshold of possibility and now suddenly back out and close the depot of prosperity. Troy can stand and really show leadership on this issue while standing in the face of economic vulnerability. Saying we did it. We made the hard choices and we protected our City and its future.
The best way to secure the future for the Library, Community Center, Nature Center, Historical Museum, City Offices, Fire and Police in jeopardy of cuts, closures or privatization is simple.

The people of Troy must be allowed to be at the bargaining table. Simply shutting down and/or cutting these vital services sends the wrong message. While privatization may seem to be an easy route, it may not offer the same level of service we cherish right now.

We have to make the tough decisions to reap the benefits later and to continue our growth. I certainly would love less taxes and I have fought on the front lines in the past to fight unnecessary taxes. However, in order to maintain the quality of life we all cherish in Troy, a General Fund Millage increase is necessary. We must stop demonizing government and believing that it is an institution bent on reducing our abilities to live our life and grow our families because of its tax structure. Taxes are not a four letter word. Those tax dollars represent the hundreds of your neighbors that go to work for this City everyday so we can maintain a standard of living unmatched.

Taxes are not abominable; they are an investment, a commitment and a responsibility. It is what the founders of this Country established and cultivated as a vision for the future and the growth we benefit from now.

That’s why this Council must approve a ballot proposal, for the millage increase suggested as an option by Mr. Szerlag. Let the people of Troy make a decision to keep these beloved services and protect our future. Even if we pass a millage we’d still have one of the lowest tax structures in Oakland County. It has been noted by independent sources and even County Officials that with scenario’s such as privatization and/or cuts, closures and consolidation, there will still be a gap to fill as we approach the new budget term.

Now I am willing to consider some concessions in conjunction with a General Fund Millage. Simply closing facilities, cutting hundreds of jobs and throwing more people into unemployment resulting in loss of income, property and even self-esteem is negligent.

So my message is clear. I will only vote for Candidates who support the millage increase. I will only support those current Council Members who are willing to stand firm and stand strong for the City of Troy and renew their pledge for this City’s growth and support the millage increase for the General Operating Fund. Let’s Save Our Troy Today!