Open Letter to the LAFD Commissioners
Too often, people only listen, to reply, rather than listening to understand or solve. In that regard, this proposed Budget appears not yet to be worked out or solved.
In 2010, the District received, what is known as the SAFER Grant.
It was said “The Lehigh Acres Board of Fire Commissioners may not want to apply for another SAFER Grant”.
Also said, without the SAFER Grant, the District must lay off, 40-50 employees. Sounds like a catch 22, doesn’t it?
Today we are faced with the fact either the District knew, they needed additional revenue or the District lacked the knowledge base required to even accept the Grant Money.
I say this because as you know, a simple Trend Analysis would have showed, that increase revenue, would be needed to fulfill the grant requirements.
So now, the District wants to either use part of the Reserve Fund or levy a non-ad valorem assessment upon the people of Lehigh Acres.
I dislike a budget lacking detail and showing line items as rounded numbers. Because numbers provided through proper trend analyzes seldom are rounded.
Yet in this budget, there it is a lack of detail and rounded numbers. The Union asked for more details, justifications, regarding this budget, and we can see why.
It appears the District declared an impasse because either the District couldn’t or wouldn’t provide the Financial Analysis of all District funds used to produce this budget.
The District either couldn’t or wouldn’t provide a financial forecast, including baseline and alternative forecasts; resulting from analyses of the reserves, capital program, debt, liabilities or financial policies.
However, knowing the District’s personnel have provided falsified and misleading information before, I cannot expect this budget, to be any more accurate than the misleading information District personnel provided in the past.
Only through true leadership can we solve both the economic and safety concerns of the people of Lehigh Acres.
It is at this time I ask the Board, rather than approving this Budget, to instead request an extension to filing (under Florida Statue 189.419), so true leadership can be shown.
Commissioners, I am simply asking for this Board,
To Do the Right Thing.
The District may want to also address their own challenges when it comes to the improper billing for their medical services. I wonder how many thousands of dollars the District is losing because they don’t bill properly.
Otherwise, it would appear KEVIN SHEA may have been correct.