It would be the staff report, of course. Not because it will say anything that wouldn't have already occurred to anyone even remotely interested in the topic, but because it could delay putting the Stop The Utility Users Tax Initiative on the ballot for two years. Which, of course, would be the actual point to such an exercise. Tuesday evening City Hall could show itself willing to use a legal mechanism, no matter how phony or gratuitous, to prevent a lot of people in this town from being able to exercise their basic Constitutional right to vote on their own taxation.
Here is how this pettifogging legal shenanigan is described in a staff report that I'm sure took far less than a month to write (link).
So why is that 30 day period it would take to write this essentially useless report so significant? And why would anyone actually even want to do this? Read on.
Barry Gold forwarded me a letter that he wrote to the City Council on this matter. Though he personally is not on record as a supporter of dumping the UUT, I thought Barry made some essential points about the importance of protecting what is the fundamental American right to call for a vote on taxation. Here is what he had to say.
That City Hall could prioritize a staff report over putting a resident driven ballot measure up to a timely vote does not speak well for the state of democracy in the City of Sierra Madre. That City Hall would be doing this in order to protect taxation that personally benefits many of those employed there makes the matter smell even worse.
If the City Council can put a 66% utility tax increase on the ballot, and spend a lot of taxpayer money doing so, shouldn't residents of Sierra Madre also have the right to counter with a measure calling for just the opposite? Getting rid of those utility taxes altogether?
I guess we'll have our answer Tuesday evening.