Typing for deadline.

Okay, it’s late again, 11:10 pm. I was asked the other night when I mentioned writing if I write every morning. Thinking of it now, I could have answered that question better. I write some mornings, yet I do write every night. I used to force a midnight deadline, it took that to force the daily writing and not an endless loop of drafts. Now though, I usually go past when I write more content (or start late,) rather than delay. As before, I need to work it in earlier, and maybe get back to some regular morning content as well.

I woke up early after.. staying up late again, I was glad to write a good piece about Council. Attending the meeting, I did find myself trying to speak (and trying to be humble when one person ahead of me asked if I wanted to “get back up there.”) I used every second of my three-minute comment, and still managed to through in a plug for my book as I walked back to my seat.

I didn’t get to bring up a point relevant to a citizen there protesting their street assessment. That gentleman said he wasn’t too worried about his assessment, only that he lived on a corner and he knew he’d have another one coming. No one on the council thought it proper to tell him, yet I called today to the Assesor’s office to ensure I haven’t missed something. Jason was out, so I won’t hear back officially until then, yet the voice on the phone assured me that was his recollection as well.

In meetings past, when someone mentions a corner issue, I would usually add something like “Mr. Mayor, may we ask the Assessor to comment on this, I seem to recall a factor to lessen the assessment to account for corner lots. Jason has a calming voice. Perhaps it’s his subject matter. Some people, myself at least sometimes, get confused and don’t understand some taxation and assessment issues. He has a well way to lay out some facts and numbers as to the methodology of the assessments and the rolls he prepares.

Also, and I might even take the time to add it up tomorrow, yet the Council “left some money on the table” last night I feel.

Such as with roll #3430. Three people protested. The first had recently bought the home and had a tight budget (likely low equity.) The second was the gentleman with the corner lot (and signatures at home he said, of a majority of the property owners on the street.) The third person was a bit rude and seemed to think he knew how individual council members feel, I know that is false- yet his protest was true.

Laura seemed to support the idea that a large business owned a majority of parcels on the street, had the majority of the assessment, and was not protesting the assessment. Several years ago, Will wrote the ordinance that added to our assessment policy a process for citizens to protest assessments, causing the council to vote in a super majority if they must.

The first draft Will presented gave “votes” to all and each entity equally in the assessment area. We amended that and passed the final version, restricting the voting quorum to the property owners, one vote each, regardless of the number or size of properties within the area.

This is the point I first attempted to make a comment during the meeting, after some more discussion, Mr. Mayor invited me to speak and I reminded the council of the above- and that technically, they didn’t need to worry if they “must” listen to the citizens, rather, just listen to them.

Today, I double-checked and the ordinance is in order, and the Council did take a proper action. “A” proper action I say, as I think there was one better:

Someone should have made a motion to have the assessor edit the roll and then pass it.  The edits? The council could have asked the assessor to lessen the assessments of citizens that had signed in protest and come to speak in protest by say 75% and then left the large business that owned half the street that did not protest at the original amount.

The council did well and they could have done better. They could have granted relief for the citizens present and grant relief to the 95% of citizens that will not receive a new road with their tax dollars this year and allowed the business to contribute an amount that they did not appear to protest.

Small things perhaps and that (I’m just guessing, I didn’t even look at the numbers on the roll,) could have left $25000 in the piggy bank. That could be enough money saved to cover the expense (apples and oranges, from a different fund,) to properly equip the downtown bathroom to be vandal-proof. I’m not sure if I have pictures, yet I used many public vault toilets out in New Mexico that had some pretty penitentiary-looking commodes. That same situation with five other street assessment rolls voted on, and the council could have saved 100k perhaps- and that is another eighth mile of a mill and top coat repair.

I’ll see if I can remember that for the next official citizen comment…

Okay, back to today… I lounged a bit this morning as I wanted to think about how to best respond to the news I heard late last night. Then I started on my list items, I have applied for college! Starting to look at classes, and I’ve decided to officially change over to an Associate of Arts, with a Behavioral Sciences Certificate, with a focus on Psychology. What will I do with an Arts degree? Oh, I will listen to citizen comments and to my fellow council members, and I hope I may begin to understand others better.

Also, it appears I may have to retake some classes, my math has apparently timed out. I took and passed MTH-131 with a 4.0 in 2013; now my ‘pathway’ calls for MTH-130 and also 141 (I think,), Intro to Stats. I will likely call and head out to the college for a new math placement test… this could be a could comparison… I know I used to be good at math.

Also got the rest of my school emails & passwords set up and I’m thinking of taking 3, if not 4 classes- I’m not working, but I can type, and I can move well enough to go to a classroom. Sounds like I’m going to be a full-time college student. That should get the steps in!

12:06, more happened, watched a movie- Truman Show. Another simile with my project here, Momento, Flowers for Algernon, Seinfeld… The list could go on, yet I maintain: This is my original work, my human story. I’m excited, our character is going to college.

Time to rest.

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