from May 2011, Government
Sunday's Herald & News’ feature article was titled, “How Much We Pay Our Public Employees”. The paper outlined several different public employees with salaries above $50,000, $100,000 and even $200,000. With the Klamath County unemployment rate hovering well above 10%, that report ought to make a few folks a little jealous if not angry.
That said, we applaud the paper’s investigation and reporting. These are public employees that get paid by us. We ought to know what they are making. Moreover, we ought to be able to control how much they make, but sadly often can't.
The Old Lemonade Stand
As children many of us made a lemonade stand to earn a little summer money. We'd find a box, make a sign, stake out a good place on the front lawn where passers by would notice us, and of course made the best pitcher of lemonade we could.
In the May 26th edition of the Herald & News, editor Steve Miller whines about the fact that the Herald & News’ request for county documents will cost the paper more than it can afford to spend.
“Finally, after months, county officials are responding formally to our records request. And Guess what? They seem to be telling us that the records we want could be available, all we have to do is pay for them. And pay a lot, more than we feel we can afford, actually.” — Editor Steve Miller of the Herald & News, page A3, May 26, 2011
This May's election had two ballot measures to help fund the County Museums and the County Jail. Both were property tax levies that issued a $0.05/$1,000 and $0.29/$1,000 tax respectively — so $0.34/$1,000 in total if both passed.
The two organizations are short of funds because of the downturn in tax revenue due of the recession, and lack-luster "recovery". The County Museums lost all their funding when the Klamath County Commissioners decided to not fund the upcoming year through the general fund. The County Jails have been in an awful sorts for about a year now operating with only one or two of the three jail pods "open for business". The passage of both measures would've ensured the County Museums could continue as previously and that the County Jail would at a minimum have two pods open for the foreseeable future.