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The Deck Chair Shuffle

From the Washington Post:

Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett (D) called for an ambitious reorganization of major government services yesterday, including the creation of a new public safety headquarters, in a state of the county address that marks his first year in office.

Leggett’s plan, which requires approval by the County Council, would consolidate the county’s police, fire and training operations on a campus in Gaithersburg, move some maintenance and storage facilities in Rockville and free land near the Shady Grove Metro for the development of thousands of high-density, transit-oriented homes.

In his speech, Leggett announced plans to begin a data-driven CountyStat program next month to make government more accountable and to introduce a 311 hotline for residents seeking county assistance. Leggett’s half-hour address to county employees and elected officials also underscored the fiscal challenges facing Montgomery, which must contend with a projected $401 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2009.

What strikes one about this story is the way in which the MoCo government has managed to totally divorce itself from reality. Bleeding red ink Ike leggett talks about more spending and bigger government. This should be a hint for MoCo residents that tax increases, not budget cuts are the solution to MoCo’s “structural deficit.”

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