The events on Nov. 5 at Fuddruckers point-out a serious problem within the Billings Police Department. Only nine officers were available for duty for a shift. During the recent public safety levy campaign, we learned the City has 143 officers. That number is verified in the FY15 budget.
Billings could soon become a safer place for pedestrians, bicyclists, skateboarders and people in wheelchairs.
If the Public Safety Levy passes, the city will increase personnel in the city attorney's office, which is funded by the General Fund. These positions are a benefit to police and fire.
City and business leaders began the conversation Tuesday that will lead to a November vote by Billings residents whether to increase their property taxes to pay for additional police, fire and other services that would cover anticipated growth over the next decade.
Everyone knows we need more police officers in Billings. However the new public safety levy has COLA raises in it as well as longevity pay, increased benefits, pay for promotions and for advanced training totaling 4.5 percent.
I keep seeing yard signs saying Save Mary Street and letters in the a recent Sunday Gazette saying bypass ill-planned, and on Tuesday not a bypass.
When it came time to hike garbage pickup and landfill fees Monday, the Billings City Council chose an option with a smaller initial increase over one that would have increased the charge $2.01 per month beginning July 1.
By the slimmest of margins — 5-4, with 1 abstention and one council member absent — the Billings City Council on Monday approved a construction and maintenance agreement that will lead to the building of a pedestrian bridge connecting Minnesota Avenue to Montana Avenue at North 25th Street.
There seems to be a huge problem with the way Billings negotiates union contracts. Every employee's first and foremost concern is for more compensation. This is a fact of life. So who is at the negotiating table?
The City Council has adopted a budget that spends more than it receives in revenue for the General Fund and the Public Safety Fund. These are the primary funds where property taxes go. This is an unsustainable and incomplete budget!
Attending the City's Community Conversations, it is clear the Council is stuck on cutting services in order to balance future budgets. They presented three programs that clearly show tax expenditures and little or no revenue as follows:
This proposed new citywide Parks Maintenance District is being created wrong. It is a city tax increase with no direct vote of the city residents as called for in the Billings City Charter. The present system has worked well for years, including Cobb Field and a new library.
The first draft of a proposed ordinance against boarded-up houses would put tough restrictions on vacant homes in Billings.
Heights residents filled the library at Castle Rock Middle School Thursday night and spoke their mind.
The concept of an Inner Belt Loop (connection between the heights and west end) has been with us for several years. At the City Council meeting on Feb. 12, 2007, Larry Brewster made an initiative to direct staff to begin buying right of way for the IBL starting next budget cycle. After discu…
City staff and the City Council are considering delaying the Inner Belt Loop (Wicks Lane/Zimmerman Trail) connection for two years. All the reasons for delay are excuses as they will still be there in two years. They are: