Bonus Blues | Hits & Misses | Salt Lake City | Salt Lake City Weekly

Bonus Blues 

Also: The Sales-Tax Carrot, Political E-mail

Pin It
Favorite
click to enlarge miss_1.jpg

Bonus Blues
The March 22 Salt Lake Tribune editorial intoned, "UTA going forward, agency must still win voters' trust." Sure, the voters can decide if they want another tax hike, but how does that help solve UTA's systemic problems? The transit agency just voted to cut executive bonuses by 80 percent and some executive salaries by 20 percent. That "some" means newly hired executives coming in at 20 percent below the now opulently paid execs. According to an August 2014 legislative audit, UTA General Manager Mike Allegra got more than $400,000 in 2013 with a $30,000 bonus. Say that bonus is now down to $7,500. Does that make you cry? Although UTA didn't get its tax hike this year, it got the support of the city and county, which could have benefited from some of the money. But at least UTA has given us something to think about. Get rid of all the old execs and at least you'd come in 20 percent below budget.

click to enlarge miss_1.jpg

The Sales-Tax Carrot
Speaking of taxes, the burning question in Salt Lake City isn't whether residents will get another "fee" tacked on to their bills, but whether there was a back-room deal with Mayor Ralph Becker and the Legislature. House Bill 454 is now in the governor's hands. It's a prison development bill that adds a sales-tax option to cities that decide to host a prison. Way down in the 2,104-line bill is the financial enticement. Becker's spokesman, Jill Love, insists there was no such deal, although Becker's opponent in the coming election, Jackie Biskupski, finds the whole thing just a little too convenient. Well, yes, it's a mayoral election year, but the question is legitimate. Taxes are never popular, and this law would give good cover.

click to enlarge hit_1.jpg

Political E-mail
In the wake of the Hillary Clinton's—what do they call it? "Emailghazi"—we are now finding out more than we'd ever want to know about politicians' e-mail habits. For instance, a New York Times story lets us know that Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, not only has an iPhone6, but he barely uses it. His e-mail habits, he said, "are not very much," and usually just, "Thanks" or "Great." Many are saying they prefer face-to-face contact—like that ever happens anywhere anymore. Phoning a politician is even less than satisfying, unless you enjoy the runaround from staff. But the best revelation came on Jimmy Kimmel Live! when President Barack Obama said he's not allowed to use anything but a Blackberry—because it can't easily be hacked.

Pin It
Favorite

More by Katharine Biele

  • Citizen Revolt: May 17

    Speak out against the uranium mills in Southern Utah; celebrate equality and write a few letters to the editor about issues important to you.
    • May 16, 2018
  • Ballot Madness

    The push back against the ballot initiatives; the war on golf and the state of Washington takes up the fight against coal.
    • May 16, 2018
  • Nutritional Non-value

    New Farm Bill would bring cuts to rural communities; Utahns Against Hunger is on their side, though, and the story of the Boston Marathon's No. 2 finisher.
    • May 9, 2018
  • More »

Latest in Hits & Misses

  • Ballot Madness

    The push back against the ballot initiatives; the war on golf and the state of Washington takes up the fight against coal.
    • May 16, 2018
  • Nutritional Non-value

    New Farm Bill would bring cuts to rural communities; Utahns Against Hunger is on their side, though, and the story of the Boston Marathon's No. 2 finisher.
    • May 9, 2018
  • Skilled Deflection

    Deflection abounds nationally, but also locally; how the Native Americans got it right and how Utah sure loves its dissidents.
    • May 2, 2018
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Readers also liked…

  • Hearing Protection, Sex Ed, Public Lands

    We certainly don't want our hunters hassled, especially in the rain, and that is good reason to loosen Utah's already liberal gun laws.
    • Jan 11, 2017
  • Release the Records

    A public records battle reaches the state's Supreme Court; more Energy Solutions malarkey and who exactly is donating to the Orrin G. Hatch Foundation?
    • Mar 21, 2018

© 2018 Salt Lake City Weekly

Website powered by Foundation