It seems like saving money is all anyone can talk or think about these days. Whether that’s by shopping at discount stores, restricting on leisure activities or other indulgences. People are becoming growingly more desperate to save money. At what level does our city reach the “bare essentials” on what we truly need to just make it by or to even save money to lower our deficit?
The City of Brentwood will face more cutbacks in the near future. After cutting $11 million of the city budget through layoffs, cuts in pay and work hours, it bothers me to think of where the next cuts are going to come from. The city plans on saving money by staff reorganizations, even more layoffs, cutting police overtime, and a retirement-and-return-to-work program.
These can be very successful and beneficial ways to decrease our deficit. However, laying off more workers and cutting back on police overtime and benefits are very unsettling. Layoffs are affecting people around the country and cutting costs purely by layoffs is not always the best solution. It’s apparent that laying off workers is an immediately effective way of saving money but it’s also contributing to the growing rate of people on unemployment and welfare in our country.
The most troubling way our City Council plans to cut another one million dollars in the future is through cutting police overtime and benefits. This is the absolute wrong way to go about saving money, considering that safety should be one of our city’s main priorities. Why cut there? Is it just the fact that everyone is becoming obsessed with saving money so much to where it jeopardizes the future of our town?
It’s obviously naïve to assume that cutbacks in overtime hours and benefits will automatically lead to a downward spiral of our community. I wonder, though, after the recent cutbacks go into effect, where will future budget cuts come from and who will they affect next?
Kyle Wells, Brentwood