To the editor:
At this point in time, the Cape Coral City Council needs to be very careful about spending. With the economy demonstrating fragility, and residents feeling the strains of a weak employment market. With seniors being required to dip into their asset principle, along with gas and food prices soaring and 2013 reflecting great uncertainties, it would be prudent to step back from the table, take a deep breath, and recognize that this is not the time to spend taxpayer monies we do not have!
We understand that all department heads can present a compelling argument for up-grades. And there is no doubt that every suggested improvement will serve to make for a better Cape Coral. Yes, more police mean a safer community. And an increase in fire department assets will always improve response time. Sure, we can use road improvements, and pay increases. And there's more, lots more. All meaningful and deserving projects.
However, this is not the time for 6-2 council votes. If Cape Coral is to remain solvent, the council must have the guts to simply say no. We can't do it because we can't afford it.
Mayor Sullivan has demonstrated integrity and intelligence. When he campaigned for office, he promised no new taxes and he has been consistent by voting "no" for every suggested tax increase. We need to respect the mayor for being a man of his word.
Councilman Leetz has also shown remarkable restraint. The councilman obviously understands, as does the mayor, that without exercising caution and fiscal responsibility we are setting the stage for a Cape Coral disaster.
The bottom line here is, first of all, 6-2 council votes is a shameful expression of thoughtless voting. Wild spending of monies that we don't have will require higher taxes, a greater strain on people who are already at the breaking point and a domino effect consisting of a citizen exodus from the Cape, bankruptcies and foreclosures. We all want upgrades but not at the expense of a broke and broken city. Mayor Sullivan and Councilman Leetz are right and the rest of the council needs to have the courage to make the hard choices and follow the mayor's lead. Sometimes it's not easy to do the right thing but people with character and conviction, who assume the responsibility of administering a public office, must make the hard choices and always permit prudence to trump politics.
The Council will serve Cape Coral more appropriately by following the mayor's lead and by recognizing Mayor Sullivan as being an honest, hard-working, and sincere man who is always willing to fight for the best interests of Cape Coral today and tomorrow!