How many other government agencies have “hidden” surpluses?
Sacramento doesn’t have the leadership to solve the deficit without a tax increase. Gov. Jerry Brown wants to raise taxes without showing any way to make sure past mistakes aren’t repeated. I love the comment that California State Senator Noreen Evans (D) made in reference to the State Parks hidden surplus: “If one department can hoard $54 million for 12 years, who else is playing the same tricks of deceit and thievery?” I think a lot of us would agree with her.
Being a lover of our Parks and having seen firsthand how in the mid-1980s Congress raided the National Park Service (after telling the NPS that they could keep their entrance fees for maintenance and other needed services), I don’t have a problem with a Park Department having a surplus if that surplus is going to be used for deferred maintenance, a problem suffered by all parks. However, this surplus was apparently “hidden” and that is the issue I have.
Doesn’t it make you wonder how many other governmental agencies have hidden pockets of money? I recall a conversation I had several years ago with several members of a local school district about why they charged for bus transportation and another nearby district did not. These school board members looked at me and said very seriously that their school district didn’t juggle their money like the other district and that someday that other school district would be caught.