Shifting funds

Local governments meeting jointly this week said they wanted to increase funding to senior citizen services, which are hurting.

The discussion came afer a funding discussion of animal control and the comparison was not lost on anyone. “We voted three cents for animals but only one cent for the seniors,” Sparks City Councilmember Julia Ratti said.

That, of course, suggested a remedy—shifting money from animals to seniors, which Sparks Councilmember Mike Carrigan proposed. The three cent property tax rate for animal control was approved by voters, so tampering with that formula is touchy. In addition, in a time when local governments circle each other suspiciously, if the animal control funding is lowered a cent, that would allow each local government to use that cent as they choose.

Reno Councilmember David Aiazzi suggested an informal agreement in which the county commission shifts the money and the cities agree not to grab it. Or the shift could be put on the ballot.

No final decision was reached on which approach to use.