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at a time when every level of government is facing budget shortfalls; state colleges are looking at degree program elimination; school systems are looking at major reductions in teacher ranks, New Hanover County opts to spend $35,000 for a Budget Facilitator.

First question should be please identify this facilitator. Second, what experience does the facilitator have in government planning and budget setting.

Heck, Common and I could have facilitated for a next to nothing in cost.

We'd enter the room; place our heaters on the table. Stand before a blackboard. You have X number of dollars to spend. Your projected cost of government services is Y. That means budget cuts of a certain percentage. Questions, so far?

Step 1, eliminate frivilous, non-essential services.

Step 2, adopt a school policy which permanently bans the thugs and disruptive element so teachers can teach and students can learn.

Step 3, hold parents accountable for the actions of their ill mannered, disruptive children. Fines and home detention come to mind.

Step 4, across the Board budget cuts for all county departments.

That's said somewhat "tongue in cheek".

But, this country, at every level, is in the financial predicament it is in due to spending more than you take in. That has to stop.

Washington released a study this week, noting State Government Pension Plans, across the country, are underfunded to the tune of $2.7 TRILLION.

Camden, NJ just laid off over 100 fire fighters and police officers due to budget considerations. Many essential services will end.

This is not hard to figure out.

Healthy, physically able life long entitlement recipients need to get off the public dole and get a job. McDonald's, Lowes, Food Lion, and others are hiring.

Tough times call for tough decisions.


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