Some of you are going to read this article and then say "If Bloomington spent $7,478.53 per resident, why can't we?" Others will point out that Marion only spent $1,115.74. Of Indiana's 2nd class cities, Fort Wayne ranks on the lower end of the per capita spending spectrum.
But it isn't how much that's the problem, it's what its spent on. Very few people would argue against increased police spending in response to a spike in violent crime. On the other hand, spending money to attract young people to Fort Wayne when the average age in this city is 2 years less than that of Indiana or the US as a whole is an example of trying to solve a problem that doesn't really exist. It is best to conserve city resourses during good economic times so that they are available during recessions. While people are disatisfied with the way things are going now, our local economy has grown. There is no way of knowing how long that will last. This is why it is important to oppose frivilous projects, even when the city can afford them.
In 2009 Fort Wayne will get $40 million when the Community Trust matures. Remember when Indiana had a budget surplus, the money was wasted in the Build Indiana Fund, and the sales tax was raised shortly after? I have this bad feeling that the next City Council will find a huge project to blow this money on, and then after the money is all gone the city will still have to pay for upkeep and maintanence costs. Part of the money should be used for property tax relief, and the rest should go into a rainy day fund.