The fleecing of Modesto

fleecing of modesto

September 16, 2017

Let me get this right…

The latest crises/outrage from the City bureaucrats.  Apparently, pictures are being taken at the McHenry Mansion, McHenry Museum and other city-owned property for weddings, proms and other events.

fleecing of modestoNever mind that that these properties are already being paid for every year by the taxpayers.   Never ceases to amaze me – the government is just the steward and caretaker of the PEOPLES PROPERTY.    What government employee first had the bright idea to suggest charging $100 for the taxpayers to photograph their own taxpayer funded properties?

A former City Councilwoman Kenni Friedman called this revenue enhancement.   Former City Councilwoman Keating, presently the CEO of the Republican Central Committee uses her influence to get a pass on $70 thousand dollars partisan fund raiser.

It gets worse, in the Modesto may charge commercial photographers to use city facilities, even those that belong to the Modesto chamber.   The article lists the outrage over “Professional photographers are realizing economic gain from the use of City properties…”

Local developers like Mike Zagaris and other consultants, land dealers, and their minions bilked taxpayers out of an estimated $68 million by getting free infrastructure for Village One.  And then they managed to get another $36 million per year for the next 25 years with a bond measure to pay for infrastructure to their private projects.

An assessment district (New Modesto) (DoMo), scams the residents of the nearly 50-square mile City, into diverting resources, money, nationwide marketing dollars (all paid for by the taxpayers) into a single square mile where all the “people of power and means” can be assured of trash pickup, a private police force and where they can feel confident that they will have limited competition as everyone from the Chamber of Commerce, to the City Government itself steers resources into this new shiny city.

It gets worse – at the same time the City decides it has the excess funds to spend $3.1 million to buy an entire downtown block (annex it for the beautiful people with business inside the 1 square mile New Modesto).

The City needs funds – so they are suggesting raising fares to ride a Modesto Area Express bus, and Increasing the cost of parking in the city’s downtown parking garages and parking lots – hurting the very people who can afford it least.

Shameful.   Fill the coffers of the wealthy “People of power and means” by increasing fees on the average person, claiming outrage over “professional photographers making money off of City Property” at the same time they dole out untold millions in City-rights to the other professionals (Real Estate companies, developers, attorneys, dealmakers, etc.) at zero charge.

Mayor Brandvold proposes yet another internal auditor (nearly $367,000), while the amount budgeted for the current auditor is only $181,000.   Looks like the new auditors first job will be to inform council they cannot fund his position.

Another question to be asked, is how did the City staff spend $2.2 million without Council approval? (another issue being investigated by the Back Story).

Our current government either has no decency/shame and believe the citizens of the entire 50 square miles of Modesto are sheep to be fleeced.