Home » Opinion » Editorials
Keep the cap? 10-4, say Manchester aldermen
In 2005, Alderman Frank Guinta challenged incumbent mayor and heavy favorite Bob Baines. Guinta ran entirely on lowering taxes. Baines wanted higher tax rates and said the people supported higher taxes to pay for better services. Guinta won, and by the end of his short tenure as mayor the heavily Democratic Board of Aldermen was no longer talking about how high they could raise taxes without getting thrown out, but about whether to raise them at all.
It was a huge shift. In 2009, the populist anti-tax movement that brought Guinta into the mayor's office succeeded in passing a spending cap. It was struck down on technical grounds by the state Supreme Court, and in 2011 voters approved a second spending cap, which remains on the books.
Alderman Ed Osborne, a Democrat, proposed that the cap be put on the ballot a third time. The people can now see the consequences of the restraint they have imposed, he argued, and they ought to reconsider. On Tuesday the aldermen defeated Osborne's proposal by a vote of 10-4.
Among those voting against Osborne were Ward 6 Democrat and potential future mayoral candidate Garth Corriveau, At-large Democrat and unwaveringly pro-union Alderman Dan O'Neil, and Ward 12 Alderman Patrick Arnold, the announced Democratic challenger to Mayor Ted Gatsas.
Arnold has criticized Gatsas for proposing too small a budget. He advocates spending more on city services and public schools. But in this election year he would not vote to have the spending cap reconsidered. That speaks volumes.
It says that the cap is so popular with voters that ambitious Democrats dare not come out against it. It also suggests most aldermen know that the real problem is not the cap, but the city's infamous Yarger-Decker pay scale and overly generous employee benefits.
READER COMMENTS: 0
- Ignoring Lyme: What are state, towns doing? - 2
- Sentence fragment: Coco's cuckoo release - 2
- Ban fireworks? Get serious - 12
- Praising freedom: While curtailing it - 16
- Fergus Cullen: No politics buffer zone - some want issue unsettled - 7
- The perfect winner: Mrs. Craig gives when she receives - 0
- A sacred rite denied: Partial justice in Marriott murder - 0
- Casino tax breaks: Bad news for Gov. Hassan - 4
- A medal well earned: Ryan M. Pitts is a hero - 3
READER COMMENTS: 0
- Two vehicle crash in Milton ends with one driver sustaining fatal injuries - 0
- Portland Sea Dogs get past NH Fisher Cats in righty’s first AA start of season - 0
- Keene Swamp Bats edge Sanford in NECBL action - 0
- Manchester's Hanover St. block party kicks off block party season - 0
- Little, MacDonald 1-2 in wild K&N 100 in Loudon - 0
- Kyle Busch focused leading up to Camping World RV Sales 301 - 0
- Somersworth man charged in three incidents - 0
- Hosts hoping for extended Little League district final - 0
- Assisted living facility proposed for Londonderry - 0
Outrageous waste: You overpaid by how much?
Another View -- Tiler Eaton: The Northern Pass project would help, not hurt, NH's economy
Coco is back in jail, but maybe not for long