Author Archive

Shining the light on Budget Prioritization

In normal times, in normal cities, budget prioritization isn’t really a big deal.  Political factions will scream and yell for their interests to be accommodated.  In a complicated dance of political give and take eventually budgets get done.  

For the most part, even if budget items don’t yield their promised results no one really cares because the basics were covered.  The trash still got picked up, schools didn’t close, the police responded to calls and property taxes are still a fraction of the cost of home ownership. Read the rest of this entry »

TWW: Hate to say I told you so

Back during the Water Works debate when times were less turbid, I made one central argument for selling the suburban water works. (see Invest the Trenton Water Works proceeds in the future not the past ,   Valuation tips for voters on the Water Works deal  and  Hope for Trenton – Compromise on the Water Works deal)

My thesis was that the suburban pipes were not strategic for the operation of Trenton as a city and that it would, instead, divert management attention from out critical issues. Read the rest of this entry »

The right kind of Citizen’s Advisory Committee

There’s been a lot of talk lately about citizen’s advisory groups in Trenton politics.  We’re in such a bad state that it seems a good idea to get citizen input on the policies that might revitalize the city. Read the rest of this entry »

The Beer Drinker’s Parable

The following story is often passed along by Republicans who wish their liberal friends could understand economics.  They hope that making a simple parable out of the down-side of progressive taxation they can stop the madness.  As Dr. Kamerschen (the author) and many other economist and philosophers (including my favorite Ayn Rand) have pointed out, there is no stopping the madness of self destructive societal behavior that attempts to feed on the success of others.  That’s certainly one of the factors that’s contributed to Trenton’s mess.  We love the poor and hate the rich.

Read the rest of this entry »

Economic “Must Reads” for Trentonians

Reinvent Trenton is published to help policy makers and voters think about Trenton’s issues and how to resolve them.  The site introduces new ideas, it presents data and it offers what I hope are constructive plans to revitalize the city.    Quite a bit of what you read on the site comes straight out of business, economics and public policy reading that I’ve done.  The idea is to interpret academic ideas and apply their central concepts to our situation here in the River City. Read the rest of this entry »

I don’t know what to say

Like many Trentonians, I approached the 2010  mayoral run-off with trepidation and knew I had two less than perfect options.  But there’s always hope. 

Since then, I’ve largely taken the summer off from Trenton politics because I was too depressed about the election including the city council contest in which most of my choices lost.  But still there’s hope. Read the rest of this entry »

Will our actions match our revitalization words?

Hopefully our city council will quickly move away from the issue of the council president’s “race”. It is unseemly to think that race divides our city council.

On to more important things. Read the rest of this entry »

Trenton’s Ethical Dilemma

We have a difficult choice to make in Trenton’s mayoral race on Tuesday, and not in a good way.

Neither of our candidates, Manny Segura or Tony Mack have a real plan for Trenton.  They both talk revitalization gibberish so it’s really a bit of a ugly toss-up from a policy perspective.  Read the rest of this entry »

An employee’s approach to fixing Trenton

by guest writer  – Brian Hill

So I was thinking about what I do for a living, and that I am a municipal public employee… and how I see so much waste everywhere. I also really dislike the perception that we are all just lazy bastards. So how do we really change the City of Trenton employee image and while we are at it, how can we change the image of Trenton? Us, how can we do it as well???  I did some research and wrote this up… Read the rest of this entry »

Dan’s Candidate picks

I’ve been voting candidates off the island on FaceBook.  This is my advice on the remaining six (including me).

Eric Jackson, Frank Weeden, John Harmon, Keith Hamilton and Annette Lartigue are left on the Island along with me. Read the rest of this entry »