I don't understand why everyone in the city government (mayor, city council, city attorneys) are all shying away from this terrible problem like it was the Ebola virus! Really! The EPB has quite obviously been cheating city taxpayers and no doubt other customers as well. Do something! If you receive a salary from the city then you should make it your priority to clean up this mess. How much longer do you expect the citizens of this city to stand by and watch you do nothing whether it is EPB, IDB, dishonest librarians, incompetent Bessie Smith board members, criminal police behavior, and more! I think it is about time for another recall effort!
There has been something rotten about the secretive method and violation of the Sunshine Law by the IDB from the beginning. One member that voted to give $9 million of taxpayer money to a luxury resort builder did not even live in the city of Chattanooga! We need new people on this board that will be responsible stewards of taxpayer dollars. David Cook suggested in an article yesterday that Helen Sharp be appointed to this board. The city council members have a chance here to do the right thing and ask her to continue to serve this community.
Yes! Please, everyone, write to ALL members of the city council and demand that they appoint Helen as a member of the IDB (Industrial Development Board). Please, please, Helen, we need you! Wade Hinton is a scoundrel who will thwart the Sunshine Law every chance he gets! Great idea, David.
As a taxpayer, I am furious that this organization has been handed $285,000 of taxpayer money by the city over the past five years without receiving any accountability for what happened to it. This is very reminiscent of the Black Chamber of Commerce that stole taxpayer funds and had to be disbanded. The account of how no one kept up with money coming in, money going out, and how this facility has totally failed as a teaching and learning and preservation of Black history organization is horrifying! The city should stop all funding of this mess and that should be that. Apparently, the board was so sloppy that none of them can be trusted and yet, Hakeem does not want an audit! It is a disgraceful situation that many would find comic if their tax dollars were not involved.
What David Cook seems to ignore is how much health care and insurance premiums have risen since Obamacare took effect. As a couple who aren't old enough for Medicare but have retired from jobs that don't have health insurance in retirement, our premiums went up 25% this year and our co-pays and out-of-pocket expenses are over $10,000 a year. With premiums and out-of-pocket costs, we will pay over $20,000 for healthcare this year and we do not qualify for a subsidy.
Teachers, according to an article in this newspaper within the past couple of days just are barely short of having a "Cadillac plan" that requires almost an unheard of small amount out of their own pockets. As a taxpayer, I see no reason why the county should be paying premiums for working spouses.
I agree with commenter "aae1049" that it is time to give a flat amount to each teacher and let them purchase their own insurance. That is the most equitable way to handle the situation.
Times are changing and I don't like the insurance deal I am getting, but I spent years as a public school teacher before changing careers and I was the only one in my family covered by my health plan. Teachers need to understand that if they don't like the new deal on healthcare, then they should vote republican!
Thanks for letting me know. All I knew was what I read in the paper. I still wish someone in the government was held accountable!
Please, people, let's stop this! It is not too late to rally around Miss Sharp and stop this obvious abuse of power. I have written to my city council rep., Ms. Berz, and she says it is a frustrating situation, but she apparently is not willing to go up against Miller and Martin--who, by the way, contributed to Mayor Berke's campaign. The Mayor has not answered my request that he get involved in stopping this. I did get a smart-aleck e-mail from Wade Hinton and he just more or less said to come to the industrial board meetings, but when I requested the time and place, he did not answer. After all of the hard work and money that Ms. Sharp put into this, are we just going to let these people steal $9 million of taxpayer money?
Now we know that the big kid in Ferguson, MO, was a thief and a bully. Not reason enough to shoot him, but possibly reason enough to have attempted to detain him in the street.
I didn't vote against the same-sex benefits--I voted against taxpayers paying for benefits for people without a legal paper showing that they have a legal, long-term commitment. As for God being Gay and people being afraid of gay people--you need to grow up, David. I wish I could buy you for what you're worth and sell you for what you think you're worth!
Luckily for most voters in Chattanooga, we don't rely on this newspaper and its slanted information on who we should vote for.