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August 2011

Taxpayer subsidized - Iowa City Farmers Market - Taste Of Market

Editor's Overview:  The following is a press release from the city of Iowa City, which cost residents taxpayer money by the way.....  This isn't really a *free* event, yes, the UICCU is funding part of this, but not everything.  Bottom line, Iowa City residents are coughing up some money to have a Veggie BBQ:

Contact: Tammy Neumann
Contact Phone: (319) 356-5100

Posted by: Recreation

Join us on Wednesday, August 31, for the annual Taste of Market. Music will be provided by the Yahoo Drummers. We'll be setting up grills and passing out free samples of in-season fruits, vegetables and baked goods provided by the vendors. Music and festivities begin at 5 p.m. at Chauncey Swan Park. The Market will be open regular Wednesday hours, 5-7 p.m. Taste of Market is co-sponsored by the University of Iowa Credit Union and the Iowa City Recreation Department. This is a free family fun event! 


Iowa's budget is on the right track

DES MOINES, IA. -- Continuing in his role as the “Taxpayers’ Watchdog” and in his duty to report directly to the people of Iowa on the condition of the state’s finances, State Auditor David A. Vaudt completed his review of the final-action Fiscal Year 2012 budget. Vaudt said, “While there are still concerns to be addressed, this budget makes huge progress in the area of fiscal sustainability. I commend the Governor and Legislators of both parties for moving Iowa closer to a fiscally sustainable path. While the budget process took a significant amount of time, the result is clearly a win for the taxpayers of Iowa.” 

Sustainability – Budget Dramatically Reduces Reliance on One-Time Resources

Auditor Vaudt noted there is only $53 million of one-time resource expenditure shifts occurring in Fiscal Year 2012. Vaudt pointed out, “The practice of shifting General Fund costs to one-time or imited-time resources has been significantly reduced in this budget. This represents a huge move toward fiscal sustainability – an encouraging sign.” In contrast, the prior year budget shifted over $600 million of General Fund costs – 12 times more cost-shifting than this year’s final-action budget.

Concerns and Challenges Remain for Elected Officials to Address in Future Years

While the final-action Fiscal Year 2012 budget makes dramatic strides toward long-term sustainability, Auditor Vaudt noted some items for elected officials to address in future years. First, unlike the Governor’s proposed two-year budgets for Fiscal Years 2012 and 2013, the final action budget does not accomplish the goal of longer-range planning. Auditor Vaudt said, “Yes, it is a two-year budget, but it is incomplete. With many departments funded at 50% in the second year, and with $1.2 billion available to appropriate, there are too many unanswered questions to draw any meaningful conclusions from the second budget year.”

Second, Auditor Vaudt identified an issue with existing law, in which carry-forward balances are included in the spending limitation calculation used to determine how much the State can spend in a given year. Vaudt said, “The danger is in how you use carry-forward balances, which are one-time moneys. Using one-time moneys for one-time expenses is fine. However, if you build ongoing spending on these monies, the spending carries forward to the next year, but the resources do not.” For example, recent current-year property tax credits were funded with the previous year’s surplus. This worked well until the most recent recession erased the predicted surplus, which in turn pushed the funding of property tax credits back into the General Fund at a time when ongoing revenues were declining. “We don’t want to repeat history,” Vaudt said. Vaudt suggested the Governor and the Legislature consider alternatives to prevent the consequences of using carry-forward balances for ongoing expenditures.

Third, shifting expenditures and revenues out of the General Fund reduces transparency. For example, the Health Care Trust Fund (HCTF) was previously funded by a revenue stream that flowed into the General Fund. The final action budget moves both the revenue stream and the spending for the HCTF outside of the General Fund – $106 million in total. Vaudt said, “The issue here is not sustainability because the ongoing programs are covered by ongoing resources. Instead, the issue is transparency and comparability. It is hard to make an apples-to-apples comparison of the State’s ongoing operating costs when we keep moving costs off the books.”

Fourth, while the practice of shifting ongoing spending to one-time resources has dramatically decreased from $638 million just one year ago, the budget still shifts $53 million of ongoing spending to one-time resources. “It is very encouraging to see the huge stride made in this area, but we have a little more work to do,” said Auditor Vaudt.

A Looming Issue – Decreased Federal Funding

Vaudt warned the State’s dependence on Federal funds to provide services to Iowans presents a huge, looming challenge. The state spent a total of $8.3 billion of Federal funds in Fiscal Year 2010.  This represents a 69% increase versus Fiscal Year 2006, thanks in large part to the Federal stimulus package of 2009 and assistance related to the 2008 floods. Vaudt said, “The Federal government has its own fiscal challenges, so it is both prudent and necessary for us to start planning for the inevitable Federal funding decrease we will see in the coming years.”


Why do Republicans like Rick Perry?

Is it that he doubled the size of government in Texas in 10 years?  http://www.economicpolicyjournal.com/2011/06/first-look-rick-perry.html

Is it because debt in Texas has doubled under his watch?http://www.politifact.com/texas/statements/2010/mar/04/bill-white/white-says-texas-debt-has-doubled-under-perry/

Is it because Perry wants to give infrastructure away to foreign corporations?  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rick_Perry#Trans-Texas_Corridor

Is it because Perry was Al Gore's campaign Chairman in Texas in the 1988 election?http://www.economicpolicyjournal.com/2011/06/first-look-rick-perry.html

Is it because he likes to force little girls to inject an unproven chemical into their bodies for the profit of his buddies and campaign contributers at Merck?  http://washingtonexaminer.com/blogs/beltway-confidential/2011/06/rick-perrys-mixed-record-regulatory-robbery

Is it because he's a Bliderberg attendee?  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Bilderberg_participants#Governors

Is it because Texas has the highest rate of minimum wage employment in the country?http://www.americanindependent.com/189314/msnbcs-maddow-highlights-texas-independent-reporting

On the surface, and with the smoke and mirrors provided by the establishment and main stream media, Rick Perry looks and sounds pretty good... to a lot of people, not to me. But with a little soap, he comes clean as the neocon puppet that they always parade in front of us as the next great thing... that always turns out to be just that, a puppet to the establishment.

Marcus Fedler ~ Ainsworth, IA.

 


Hawkeye Football Fan News

UI student leaders endorse Big Ten sportsmanship and spirit agreement
Leaders of University of Iowa student government and the Hawks Nest, the official student fan group, have joined other Big Ten Conference student leaders in endorsing a Big Ten Sportsmanship and Spirit Agreement. The agreement encourages student fans to be “proud and cheer loud,” but also urges respect for visiting teams and fans, game officials and the private property of residents living near Kinnick Stadium. 
 
Hawkeye fans offered game day parking alternatives, recommendations
Hawkeye fans can avoid traffic congestion and a shortage of parking near Kinnick Stadium by taking advantage of other parking facilities in the area or by using free shuttles, public transportation or by walking to games. New for this season: Fans should note the changes in fees for UI-owned lots. In addition, the Myrtle Avenue parking lot is closed to the public. That lot is now reserved for those who make financial contributions to the National I-Club. For complete football parking information, visit http://www.hawkeyesports.com/gameday/parking-2011.html.
 
New express lanes mean faster entrance for Kinnick fans
Four new express lanes have been established to speed entry into Kinnick Stadium for University of Iowa football games this fall. The express entrances are for fans who bring nothing to the game but their ticket. All other fans must enter at regular gates, where their purses, which must be 8.5 by 11 inches or smaller, will be checked for prohibited items. Likewise, fans will be asked to prove that they have no prohibited items in pockets and jackets. The express lanes will be located at Gates C, G, I and M. All entrance gates will open 90 minutes before kickoff.

Radical lefties rally to 'shut down' U.S. Government

Glenn Beck has the disturbing audio of radical leftists who are organizing and beginning to up their protests, calling for people to help shut down the U.S. government. The chants single out the Tea Party specifically and include what seemed like a threat: "All you f***ing Tea Baggers get ready" was the rallying cry. What does that mean exactly? Glenn has the shocking audio on radio today - get the full story at GlennBeck.com.
 
Congressional Black Caucus declares war on Tea Party
 
Coincidence? Leftists start targeting the Tea Parties with violent rhetoric at the exact same time the Congressional Black Caucus declares war on the Tea Party. The left is in pure desperation mode made evident by the fact that they are attacking a group of people who have a voice but not nearly enough power to just dictate what happens in Washington DC. But, that's not stopping the ridiculous attacks. See the latest from the CBC and Glenn's response HERE.
 
How do you respond to the attacks?
 
Now that you, as a Tea Party member, are directly in the crosshairs of radical leftists - there will be a choice to make. How do you respond? Do you lash back? Glenn has been working on the answer to that very question for about a year: The Pledge of Non-Violence. Glenn explains on radio today – DETAILS.
 
Sneak peek: See the pics of Glenn's new GBTV set
 
Check out the first look photos of the set for Glenn's upcoming new 2 hour program exclusively on GBTV.com -- beginning September 12th. And don’t miss tonight on GBTV the 5 part mini-series: The Diary of Anne Frank. Episode 2 will air tonight at 9 pm ET. Plus all the Restoring Courage events are all available on demand only on GBTV! Sign up now, get entertained AND get the all new Glenn Beck Program beginning 9.12!
 
Did US Consulate warn against Beck event?
 
The Blaze has uncovered a warning from the State Department released August 24th that instructed citizens to steer clear of the Restoring Courage event being held that evening. Was this a political maneuver? Or was this a legitimate response to serious threats? The Blaze investigates and Glenn responds on radio today. WATCH
 
The amazing stories from the people of Israel: Follow Glenn on his journey to Restore Courage with this limited edition photo book. Pre-order your copy now.
 
Escalation: Israel moves warships in response to terror threat
 
The AP is reporting that military sources have indicated Israel is so concerned about a terror threat from Egypt they are moving warships to the border. Meanwhile, Iran is reportedly set to send ships to the area as well - but only to 'thwart pirate activity' -- uh huh. Get the full story HERE.  
 
Obama's family woes: Illegal alien Uncle busted for DUI; has valid SS# and drivers license...STORY.

Why building a food reserve is important

Perhaps you are familiar with Aesop’s fable of “The Grasshopper and the Ant.”

In a field one summer's day a Grasshopper was hopping about, chirping and singing to its heart's content. An Ant passed by, bearing along with great toil an ear of corn he was taking to the nest.

"Why not come and chat with me," said the Grasshopper, "instead of toiling and moiling in that way?"

"I am helping to lay up food for the winter," said the Ant, "and recommend you to do the same."

"Why bother about winter?" said the Grasshopper; we have got plenty of food at present." But the Ant went on its way and continued its toil.

When the winter came the Grasshopper found itself dying of hunger, while it saw the ants distributing, every day, corn and grain from the stores they had collected in the summer.

Then the Grasshopper knew... It is best to prepare for the days of necessity.

“Dying” is a hard way to learn a lesson in self-reliance.

Disney in 1934 did an animated version with a softer ending – presumably for children. In it, the weak and starving grasshopper turns up on the door front of the ants and begs for help. The warm, well-fed, happy and well-stocked ants have mercy on the grasshopper and offer him food and shelter in exchange for work.

In either case, the lesson is clear. It’s better to be an ant than a grasshopper!

Throughout the ages, wise men have always stored food. Why? . . .

. . . Because “Winter” Always Comes

Sometimes it’s a personal “Winter” that we face:

  • We are facing the worse employment numbers since Disney did his cartoon in the middle of the Great Depression.
  • Tens of thousands of people are disabled by accident or illness yearly
  • If you lost your job or source of income, wouldn’t you feel much better knowing that at least you had a good reserve of food?

We have heard from countless people who are so thankful they have been prepared because they owned their own food reserves.

Other causes of food shortages are the result of inevitably occurring natural disasters that impact large geographic areas or the whole world:

  • Severe Droughts
  • Floods
  • Hurricanes (remember the images from Katrina?)
  • Earthquakes

Have you ever seen the food shelves cleaned out even before a more minor storm in your local area? Wouldn’t it be comforting to know you were prepared no matter what? And . . .

Inflation is Inevitable

Based on the last 100 years, do you think there is a chance that it’s NOT going to be more expensive to feed your family next year than this year?

Imagine if your grocery store announced that tomorrow they were putting everything on sale for the same prices they had 15 years ago?

Disregarding the hassle of fighting the crowds, would it not make sense to be there in the morning to buy as much as you could?

Would it not be easier simply to invest in your own source of food right now? Locking in today’s prices now, before they inevitably rise?

The threats to our food security are now larger than ever because of the interdependencies built into our modern society.

Simply put, having sufficient food for our families depends on all of the following working perfectly:

  • our bank
  • our job, health, and paycheck
  • our supermarket
  • the local delivery trucks and their warehouses
  • the manufacturer's shippers and the plant itself
  • the farmers and their harvesting equipment and delivery trucks
  • the crops, and
  • the weather.

Frankly, it’s a delicate weave that is getting more vulnerable the more in debt our whole country becomes and the more our U.S. Dollar is devalued.

We encourage you to act now to prepare for your future! There will always be “Winters.” There will always be ants. And there will always be grasshoppers.

The more of us that are prepared, the more generous, empowered, and powerful we will all be. The safer our families will be. The more secure our communities will be. The stronger our States will be. The more invincible our Country will be.

Self-reliance is a moral responsibility. Let’s all do our part to be prepared and extend “Acts of Kindness Invitations” to others to do the same.

FoodFreedomTour 


State Democrat Chair Sue Dvorsky cherry picks data to play petty game of 'gotcha' with Governor

By Mike Thayer

Sue Dvorsky is pathetic.  She thinks it's a good move to play the politics so many people are tired of, in trying to paint Republican Governor Terry Branstad in a bad light.  See related story by clicking here.  What she's doing is manipulative crap straight out of the dusty old liberal playbook.

Interrupted by the flooding of the Missouri River in western Iowa, the Gov. and Lt. Gov. have resumed traveling the state on a 'Jobs For Iowa' tour, touching base with Iowans in all 99 counties about the economy and jobs.  It's a very conservative trip, travel done in a van with overnight stays in Super 8 motels.  

So in response to the Governor getting feedback from Iowans and fulfilling a campaign promise, what does the Iowa Democrat party do under the so-called leadership of Sue Dvorsky?.....  Force the state to spend taxpayer money on frivolous Freedom Of Information Act requests and make manipulative statements to the press using cherry picked data.  

"We don't know how much these tours are costing taxpayers, but we do know they're not creating a single job for Iowans," said Iowa Democratic Party Chairwoman Sue Dvorsky. "It would be one thing if these tours were creating jobs. Unfortunately, the state has lost 8,200 jobs under Gov. Branstad, and taxpayers are being asked to keep paying unknown amounts for these tours."

If you think about it, Dvorsky is compounding the problem she's pretending to be upset about - wasted taxpayer dollars.

Here's where her manipulation comes in, and we'll get to her hypocrisy in a minute.....

She cherry picked the negative data on jobs.  The Bureau of Labor Statistics releases jobs data every month.  The most used set of data because it uses a much larger sample, comes from the Current Employment Statistics survey (CES).  But there's another employment estimate from the Census' Current Population Survey (CPS) that doesn't get as much attention.  

According to the CES survey, the state has added 14,400 jobs since Branstad took office.  But Dvorsky doesn't want to use THAT number, gosh no!   She's using data from the CPS survey, which shows the state losing 8,211 jobs since Branstad took office.

Note the difference in how I described the employment situation, vs. how Dvorksy describes the situation.

ME:  the state adding or losing jobs since Branstad took office..... 
DVORSKY: "Unfortunately, the state has lost 8,200 jobs under Gov. Branstad...."

Politicians don't create private sector jobs Sue, businesses meeting demand do.  What a good politician does is help foster an environment so that jobs can be created. 

And here's another manipulation by Dvorsky...   She didn't reveal what sector has experienced the jobs loss.  Some state jobs fat has been sliced since Branstad took office.  The latest data for the month of July as reported by Iowa Workforce Development shows the following: 

Total nonfarm employment increased by 8,000 in July, raising the level to 1,487,800 for the state. Private industry grew by 2,900 jobs, while the public sectors were up 5,100 jobs. 

Review that, private sector jobs up by 2,900.....  Public sector jobs up by 5,100.  Guess what?  Local governments created 5,900 jobs in July (seasonal, notably schools).

5,900 local government jobs
-800 fewer state government jobs
= 5,100 net government jobs created

Dvorsky is upset about fewer state government jobs!    What she also didn't reveal to you:  Year over year, there are 3,400 fewer people working government jobs (local and state) for July.  Branstad has been doing what he said he would do - trimming some fat - and Dvorsky doesn't like it. 

Instead of discussing economic issues honorably and acknowledging the state's unemployment rate has come down from the 6.1% it was when Branstad took office and has been 6.0 for three straight months now while Branstad policies start picking up a head of economic steam.......  Dvorsky goes low road, playing political games using cherry picked data behind a hidden agenda.  She doesn't like what she sees in fewer state government jobs.  That's her REAL gripe, she doesn't give a rat's rear end about private sector jobs, unless they're UNION jobs.....  Which don't forget, many of those tie in to the state.

And here's Dvorsky's hypocrisy bit:  She didn't say boo during the many times Culver used the liberal backdrop of Iowa City for photo shoots, signing various pieces of legislation into law.  Think about how much money Culver could have saved taxpayers by simply signing legislation into law at his desk in Des Moines.   No, he made formal press announcements, his office arranged travel for him and his travel staff, issued press credentials, tasked the State Trooper and Sheriff's offices unnecessarily....  And then there's the Culver campaign stops on the taxpayer dime via plane, disguised as official trips, but the speeches were anti-Branstad, as opposed to being state program oriented.  And did Dvorsky say boo about Culver's failed I-Jobs Program?  A program that cost taxpayers more than $800 million and didn't even come close to delivering the number of  jobs the Governor promised?  Nope, no honorable comments came from Dvorsky on that.   

Let's see.....  Culver wasting $800+ million on a very flawed idea.....  vs. Branstad driving from town to town in a van, shaking the hands of Iowans who haven't seen a governor in their neck of the woods for 12 years and discussing the economy.

Or how about Culver instructing the state trooper driving the governor's unmarked SUV to chase down somebody who reportedly flipped the governor off?  Was that a wise use of trooper time Sue?

Sue Dvorsky isn't a LEADER, she's a pathetic political hack.

Contact Dvorsky and tell her to stop with the b.s. (Barbra Streisand)

 

 


Iowa City has public safety issues and water concerns, uses taxpayer money to buy ice cream

The following is a press release issued by the city of Iowa City, which resident taxpayers also funded:

Contact: Marcia Bollinger
Contact Phone: (319) 356-5237

Party in the Park: Reno Park

Posted by: Neighborhood Services

If you're a fan of old-time fiddle music, you won't want to miss this week's "Party in the Park," where Al and Aleta Murphy will perform. The party is scheduled Thursday, September 1 from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at Reno Park, located at the intersection of Reno and Fairchild Streets.

Bring your family and invite your neighbors to come along, too! These parties offer a chance for neighbors to meet in their local park for an evening of fun and entertainment, including live music, games, arts and crafts, and ice cream -- all at no charge!

The events are sponsored by the City's Parks and Recreation Department and Neighborhood Services Division. For more information, contact Joyce Carroll with the City's Parks and Recreation Department at joyce-carroll@iowa-city.org or 319.356.5100, or Marcia Bollinger with the City's Neighborhood Services division at marcia-bollinger@iowa-city.org or 319.356.5237.