[quote="Wilson, I am curious, do any of the Counties pay dues for any lobbyists or lobbying organizations which advocate any kind of increase in the presence of County Government in the over-all mix of government activities? .[/quote]
I'm trying to understand what your question has to do with the Thread but I will answer it for you.
Yes the County does pay dues to NACO, MCCA, MACO,Deeds, Treasurers, Probate, Sheriff, and DA Associations. All of these groups lobby in Augusta, Cumberland has there own Lobbist.
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My passenger, a hard-working mother of four with two in college, an expensive rent bill, car payment, and no ability to afford health insurance and no desire to ask the government for it, remarked, - "Man, I wish I could afford cable, or satellite."[/quote]
So you mean your passenger didn't go to the town and ask for help? I'm lost, if you get fuel Assistence and food stamps she could afford cable or satellite.
Or she can go to Mental Health services, say your having trouble in life due to the lack of Cable tv, you can't watch CNN (Clinton News Network) so your depress. You then can get help with some money to get your cable so you can watch CNN. That money comming from Towns and Counties, all payed by the Property Tax. Then you can go to the County and get an abatement on your taxes so you will not have to pay them, that will give you more money for Beer or wine so you can relax with your free Cable TV, taking your Prozac that was given to you by the Mental Health Services, drinking your wine while eating Ribeye stakes on the grill that you bought with your food stamps. The grill was given to you by the Salvation Army, the gas for the grill of corse came from the HEAP program.
God this could go on for ever and all paid by Mine and your Property Tax Dollars. Get the Point :!:
[quote="Town Manager"]My understanding is SOME agencies need to receive a local/county appropriation in order to receive their federal subsidy. I think the CAP agencies are under this mandate. It's a statewide issue since these entities provide service in every county from York to Aroostook. Phil, maybe something to bring up to the Maine County Commissioner's Assoc to have a statewide discussion on the issue.
My b.s. meter is going off.
Has anyone ever shown you a law or regulation to back that up?
My understanding is SOME agencies need to receive a local/county appropriation in order to receive their federal subsidy. I think the CAP agencies are under this mandate.[/quote][quote]
Dan is Right the BS Meter is not just going off its just blew up. CAP use state dollars and CDGB money (TAX DOLLARS) to do there work. I Know I work for several of them.
There are a few agency's that need the United Way but not from towns and Counties[/quote]
Easy guys, I thought I remembered hearing that at some point in my career. I dont exactly write this stuff down every time!! Let me do some checking and I promise I will get back to you. Maybe it is B.S., but I'll be the first to admit that if it is!
Philip Roy - My comment has this to do with the thread: You expressed your concern that there is no town meeting process at the county level. I agree and would rather see the BSA, Red Cross etc... funded by the towns if they are to be funded at all. I believe that there is a municipal benefit to funding the Red Cross, etc... For example, I would imagine that the cost to the towns of sorting out the aftermath of a fire would be greater if not for the Red Cross. If people get together and hash it out, I will happily live with the results.
I just think that it is ironic that the counties spend money lobbying for more influence when I agree with what I thought was your position that they are less accountable to the voters and therefore should be less involved in discretionary spending matters.
I have contended for years that MCCA is ineffective. Those county dollars would be better spent if the Counties joined MMA. :lol:
Please don't use AMG to proselytize for your Devil worshipping cult.
[quote="Town Manager"]I have contended for years that MCCA is ineffective. Those county dollars would be better spent if the Counties joined MMA. :lol:[/quote]
Most Counies are members of MMA, the problem is MMA dosn't fight for Counties.
MCCA is only the County Commissioners Association. MACO should be fight for Counties but they can't. I agree about MCCA to an extent.
[quote]I just think that it is ironic that the counties spend money lobbying for more influence when I agree with what I thought was your position that they are less accountable to the voters and therefore should be less involved in discretionary spending matters.
Counties need to be more accountable to the people they serve. Counties need to have lobbying going on for them at the state house with out this you would be paying alot more taxes then you are.
I have said time and time again that counties should be more accountable to the voters and should be able to explain in all spending maters. Discretionary spending should be done with a lipness test or at the least straight fast test. Counties shouldn't be giving to agency's at all, if they want the money go to the towns, alot of these agency double dip and this has to stop
Philip, I believe Counties are "associate members" of MMA, so they can tap into the insurance programs, similar to water and sewer districts etc. I'm talking about a complete abolishment of Howe and Co., oops MCCA, and full membership into the existing MMA. They could change the name to MM&CA or MC&MA if you would like. I just think local/county government would be more effective against the forces of evil a.k.a. state government if they were under the same umbrella.
If I may express my ignorance, do these associations lobby for the interests of the people of the respective municipalities and counties or do they lobby for the interests of the leaders/government of the towns and counties?
Specifically, would/should the governments of the towns and counties spend taxpayer money for dues to organizations which lobby for the governments of the towns and counties rather than for the people of the towns and counties?
Townmanager: with out spilling the beans, there is more to come. That is all I will say about that.
MMA or the Devel Cult as Dan would say, will never let Counties be full members that have some kind of vote. Alot of towns (most) think Counties are bad and do nothing but take there tax dollars. MMA time and time again is against Counties they do not want to lose the control As long as MMA and Towns fight Counties taxes in Maine will always be high, the don't get Counties can do more servies for less,
why you ask because we have more people to pay the bill its not rocket science. :idea: :!:
Specifically, would/should the governments of the towns and counties spend taxpayer money for dues to organizations which lobby for the governments of the towns and counties rather than for the people of the towns and counties?[/quote]
Wilson if counties didn't lobby in the last 9 days you would be paying more property tax just to fund the State prisions. if it wasn't for County Government you would be paying more taxes on many frounts. when we lobby we are doing the best for our towns and the people the expect us to keep taxes down.
[quote="Philip Roy"]... Counties can do more servies for less, why you ask because we have more people to pay the bill its not rocket science. :idea: :!:[/quote]
More people, less accountability, who could ask for more? :shock:
[i]"The Maine Municipal Association is a voluntary membership organization of the State's cities, towns, plantations and organized townships to provide a unified voice for Maine's municipalities to promote and strengthen local government."[/i]-From the MMA Website.
I do not know who you are but by your posting it is clear you have no idea what your County does for you. Do your self a favor and find out. its not less accountabliity its really more.
What happens if the interests of the people are in conflict with the interests of the government? (ya think?) For example, what if the people like to have the right to a referendum vote but the government is offended by the audacity of the people to second guess them? Is there any guarantee that the people will not have to fight their own tax dollars?
Oh please Phil, you have got to be kidding. More accountability?? County government in Maine is obsolete. Ask 10 residents of ANY town who their elected county commissioner is, and you will get a blank stare. Maine is not Arizona. Local government is king whether you like it or not, and will be for many years to come. Can we do with regional government, absolutely, but 16 counties for a state larger than the rest of New England combined?? I don't think so!
your fight is with the state not Towns or Counties
[quote="Town Manager"][i]"The Maine Municipal Association is a voluntary membership organization of the State's cities, towns, plantations and organized townships to provide a unified voice for Maine's municipalities to promote and strengthen local government."[/i]-From the MMA Website.[/quote]
It is an evil cult.
If I agree with you that my fight is with the state, I still have to say that my fight is also with the entities spending money to lobby the state.
Added later: Oh S**t, I agree with Dan! :)
Non profits should go directly to the people for their donations, not the towns, not the county, not the state. Taxes are for running government expenses, not to be doled out. Its an individuals choice on how and to which organization he wishes to donate. The best charities will survive on merit and hard work for their causes, the ones that run on mostly admin costs will go down. Its really up to them.
It is an evil cult, I also agree with Dan.
The counties, the towns, and everyone else have to have representation at the Legislature because legislators are largerly ignorant of the impact their proposals would have. They propose bills without knowing anything about what they are doing. Lobbyists spend much of their time simply educating legislators about the groups that they represent -- be it towns, counties, business, or anything else.
The Legislature also makes it very hard for anyone but someone who is being padi to be there to participate effectively in the process.
Come on, we agree about one thing county government is obsolete in some counties. Ask anyone in Somerset County how there Commissioners are and you will get a different answer then your use to. Why we are not obsolete and will become one of the strongest Counties in the state, why We are going to be Accountable to our voters.
County Commissioners has been an old persons post, we need to change that and fast. you can not put people into office that don't even know how to turn on a computer let alone stay awake for a 2 hour meeting.
You need new blood and as long as people keep voting there friend instead of someone that will get the job done you will have a County that is Obsolete.
I have less then 1 1/2 years to make change in Somerset and we are doing it, we have pass more motions in four months then the past Commissioners did in one year, we are changing hay why don't you apply for the job of Manager.
Oh wait that would mean you would be accountable that wouldn't work would it.
Phil, I had the pleasure (NOT) of attending a County Commissioner's Convention. One of the workshops was on retirement community living. Yeah, you can say it's an "old person's post".
I have the utmost respect for county government. I believe, when done right, its a model to implore. But, with the exception of Aroostook and York, County government in Maine is still highly dependent on the State. 2 out of 16 counties that have their own charters is far from being to emulate across the state. Come back in a few years and maybe we can talk.
I do not know who you are but by your posting it is clear you have no idea what your County does for you. Do your self a favor and find out. its not less accountabliity its really more.[/quote]
I am nothing more, nor less, than a county taxpayer. I would expect nothing less than that people in both municipal and county government might disagree with my opinions, but I am very comfortable with my understanding of what my county does for me. I am, however, somewhat surprised by your response in light of your own expressed concern that county spending is not subject to the same type of review as town spending.
Did I miss something?
[quote="Town Manager"] 2 out of 16 counties that have their own charters is far from being to emulate across the state. [/quote]
That's 12.5%. What percentage of towns in Maine have charters?
From looking at the MMA site, it looks like the percentage is about the same.
[quote="Dan Billings"]It should also be noted that most of the groups on Phil's list are not like the Salvation Army. Most are in bed with government and get big bucks from government.[/quote]
Perhaps I'm just partial to the Salvation Army...low overhead and real works.