State of the City Speech

St. Rita Girl Scout Troop Color Guards for Troops 8471 and 13,731 pose with Mayor Pro Tem Josh Moran and Mayor John Buchanan

Posted 2/28/12 – To paraphrase the old joke about fights and hockey – I went to the State of the City Speech, last night, and a UUT campaign speech broke out.  After Girl Scout Troops 8471 and 13, 731 from St. Rita presented the colors, and the Bethany Lions Choir performed three songs (I have video of the colors being presented and the choir singing that  I’ll be posting later this week, on this page), Mayor Pro Tem Josh Moran introduced Mayor John Buchanan, who gave the State of the City speech.  He declared the state of the City strong, but noted that we are sailing into some strong headwinds.  Mayor Buchanan, with a slideshow monitored by City Manger Elaine Aguilar, then gave a fairly comprehensive speech spelling out the services that the City and its various departments offer the residents of our City, as well as the costs associated with providing those services.  One that might catch your eye was that in the few weeks following the recent windstorms, Public Works cleaned up 5500 tons of debris, the equivalent of half the debris that they had cleaned up in the entire year of 2010.

The Mayor also spent some time telling everyone that we need the UUT extended, to help fight the headwinds.  The UUT is currently scheduled to begin sunsetting in 2013 and  disappear in 2015, unless voters come together to extend it.  According to the Mayor, we’d have a million dollar size hold in our budget without the UUT.  He urged voters to pass the initiative that is on the April ballot.  He did not mention that the status quo will remain through 2013, and that voters would have a second opportunity to vote on the issue in 2014, the year before the UUT goes away forever, unless residents vote to extend it.  You can see the entire speech by watching the video, it’s about a half hour long.  Below the video, there are a few photos that I took, as well.

The sponsors for the evening, who made it so the event didn’t cost the City any money, were Athens Services; Leibert, Cassidy, Whitmore; Jan’s Towing, San Gabriel Valley Municipal Water District, SCE,  and West Coast Arborists.