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Sun has fallen victim to budget games played on County Drive

To The Daily Sun,

The shell game continues on County Drive. It's understandable that this sleight of hand would lead to errors in The Laconia Daily Sun's article covering the Belknap County budget.

The Sun attributes the following to Commissioner DeVoy: "He said yesterday it was poor budget management on the part of the delegation that helped create the current bleak fiscal situation for the county." While I'll agree that "poor budget management" is involved, the fact is the delegation appropriates funds and the county administration is tasked with budget management. It would be helpful if the administration would keep their spending to monies that had actually been appropriated as opposed to finding ways to spend money which had not been appropriated. In particular, $10,000 was spent for a study which was not contemplated in the 2017 budget. Further, they could use better judgment in choosing which legal battles to take up.

The chart The Laconia Daily Sun produced depicting expenses continues the deception perpetrated upon the citizens of the county. The chart shows expenses for 2016 approaching $27 million. The actual audited expenses for 2016, as reported in the 2017 MS-45 is $25,874,967, nearly $1 million less than the amount pictured. Once again, The Sun falls victim to the game played on County Drive which involves swapping between inflated budget numbers and actual audited spending.

To get a sense of how far off budget numbers can get, take a look back to 2011. The amount budgeted for county operations was $32,158,768, the amount actually spent was $25,805,826. The administration would then go on to say they had "operational savings" of $6,352,942. Perhaps I'll wander over to a local farm and see if some "operational savings" will come out of the back end of a bull for the 2017 budget.

Rep. Mike Sylvia

  • Written by Mike Mortensen
  • Category: Letters
  • Hits: 281

Phrase ‘slipped through the cracks’ needs to end when it comes to treatment of vets

To The Daily Sun,

Okay, here we go again with the VA and its seemingly many, ongoing problems that continue to place veterans, those we say,"we care so much about" in harms way. This time it's a matter of some doctors who may not have done such good jobs in taking care of these veterans and were allowed to move on without any baggage saying so, Some went to the private sector and others to other VA facilities.

Well now, let's see, the secectery of the VA, who has been given all kinds of accolades for doing such a great job, especially here in N.H. after a letter showed up in a Boston paper, yet he ignored our reps request to look into the needs and problems we were having at Manchester VA — as reported by "whistleblowers," or as we veterans refer to them as,"people who truly care about us and our needs!"! Secretary David Jonathan Shulkin is also an MD; you'd think he would have looked into this sometime ago. I'm sure, being a doctor, he had heard about VA doctor care in the past and would have wanted to check it out for himself? No ?

He cares so much about the VA, veterans and the job he's doing he would never walk away and accept another position like say, secretary of Health and Human Services now that Tom Price is no longer there? No, he wouldn't do that.

We, here in N.H. understand that the VA system is a mess no matter what is being said. Improving? We can only hope. We have to keep our eyes open, here in N.H. and take care of each other and watch our own system. That term,"slipped through the cracks," has to end. When we speak of "choice," let's make sure it's OUR choice, NOT some committee's or cepartment's choice for US!

Bob Jones
Vietnam Veteran

  • Written by Edward Engler
  • Category: Letters
  • Hits: 234