Personal finance: Am I the only one that sees a problem here?

It’s been on at least the last two meeting agendas and sure enough it made it back onto the agenda for tonight’s recessed Bay St Louis Council meeting:

08-09-17 Agenda - recessedWhy on God’s green earth would Councilman Zimmerman’s salary be a topic for discussion? I asked and the answer I got was disturbing on several different levels. It appears Zimmerman took early social security to help make ends meet and now doesn’t want to make too much money and jeopardize his new government check. My instant reaction was to wonder why he did not think about the ramifications of running for office when he qualified for the Ward 5 Council earlier this year.

Normally a politician not wanting to take a paycheck would be refreshing and it could have been for Zimmerman had he thought things through but it is clear he didn’t do that before running to the taxpayers for a solution to his personal financial problem with Social Security. It also carries implications about his financial acumen which, for a councilman in a “strong Mayor” town whose main job responsibilities are financial in nature, (Budget and annual audit) is a must in order to be effective.

I am asked about taking social security early frequently in the day job, in fact the interplay between taking early social security and planning for a steady retirement income stream is the number 1 question I am asked by my individual income tax clients. Since Mr. Zimmerman put his personal finances on display I’ll use the numbers he disclosed to illustrate a point that trying to game social security is a losers game.

First up is the income: Continue reading “Personal finance: Am I the only one that sees a problem here?”

A couple of thoughts on last night’s recessed BSL City Council Meeting

Sadly folks, City Clowncilmen were spotted. Just a thought, but using a school board appointment to fight a political consultant’s third party agenda is ill advised on so many levels, including and especially invoking a new found love for ethics in government involving a school system which has systemic issues complying with basic state mandates on the subject [Lana Noonan’s first hand account for Slabbed is here]. Whoever put that bug in Councilman Buddy Zimmerman’s ear did well in making him appear to be a Clowncilman rather than a Councilman.

Equally amusing but not quite as inane was the question about whether or not a school level administrative assistant (school secretary) had any  contact with the children. My own experience is a teacher has a kid for a year, maybe two tops while the same child comes to the same office needing help at various times every year they attend school. By definition a school secretary would have more contact with the children over the long haul.

Just an observation but in all my time attending BSL Council meetings, never once did I see the previous council deny the Mayor such an appointment, even when the Mayor and Council were not otherwise getting along. That would have been true in February of this year had then Mayor Fillingame appointed Maurice Singleton to another term on the School Board.

I am told the reason Singleton was not reappointed when his term of office expired was because then Mayor Fillingame was trying to leverage Singleton into qualifying for City Council against Ward 3 Councilman Reed. It is for that reason that Slabbed presented this post, and accompanying artistic rendition of a Toolman. Last night’s short meeting was the final chapter in that particular saga, such chapter titled “disposal”. Continue reading “A couple of thoughts on last night’s recessed BSL City Council Meeting”