Public-nonprofit partnerships essential to city's future
Original post made by Skip Justman on Jul 19, 2006
Public-nonprofit/private partnerships will relieve the financial burden for government. Government should focus their funds on infrastructure roads, sidewalks and public safety especially in light of the various residential break-ins in Palo Alto.
Without public-nonprofit partnerships, the services our community cherishes may soon disappear because they will be too expensive to operate. Imposing another tax and/or raising fees will not fix the problem of increasing governmental costs.
In Menlo Park, employee cost increased 27 percent while the number of full-time-equivalent jobs dropped 13 percent, and they are thinking of alternatives to help relieve the financial burden of government. At the state level, the Legislative Analyst Office estimates retiree health care liabilities to be in the range of $40 billion to $70 billion "and perhaps more."
Every citizen in California should be concerned about these increasing costs at all levels of government. In the June primary, it was clear voters do not want another tax. All the tax-increase propositions and Measure A in Santa Clara County were all voted down. At what point will increasing taxes and fees be unreasonable?
Paying taxes is not bad because it indicates a prosperous economy. The top 10 percent of California taxpayers have paid, without complaint, 71 percent of California personal income tax. These same citizens, many of whom live in Silicon Valley, have also been generous through charitable donations.
Promoting community services locally, relieving the financial burden of government, and enhancing revenue through public-nonprofit/private partnerships starts in our own communities. Sacramento will not solve our local fiscal problems.
The Junior Museum & Zoo is ripe for a public- nonprofit partnership. I have worked closely with Virginia Chang Kiraly, former president and now treasurer of the Junior Museum & Zoo (now a Republican candidate for state Assembly). She has led that organization to a point where the City Council can and should continue on the path to allow the Junior Museum & Zoo to operate as a nonprofit organization.
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