This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on November 11, 2009 1:55 PM. The previous post in this blog was Forward thinker. The next post in this blog is Bigger parks for the outer east side. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Ain't no mountain high enough

No money shortage, no labor strife is enough to stop the public relations juggernaut in our many local government agencies. Here's a 9-by-27 full-color glossy mailer that arrived at our place yesterday:

I wish they'd stop selling me the schools, and just operate them.

Comments (13)

Need I explain, they did it for the kids!!!

A new PEW report states Oregon is one of nine states in danger of falling into the California-style-financial-meltdown spiral. Yet the rating agencies only a month or so ago dubiously gave the state of Oregon a triple A rating with stable condition(no-need-to-watch rating). Of course, this website has known the dubiousness of Portland city's high credit rating. Not surprisingly, everyday Portlanders are happy when the spending is going on with borrowed monies, but we all know what happens when the bills come due when the economy has a major flat tire. The clock on escaping Portland's debt and obligations is ticking much more quickly than only a couple of years ago.

Actually, I've been struck at how stable the Portland debt clock numbers seem to be -- perhaps a false impression. Jack, do you have a chart showing the progression of that number (currently $9300 and change) through time?

The recent state ratings were not triple A. They were double A.

The city debt is still growing. Police and fire pension liabilities were reduced last year when the city changed actuaries and thereby bought rosier actuarial assumptions. The city has not issued much in the way of bonds this year, at least little that has been sold publicly. I doubt that it's because Fireman Randy and Mayor Creepy have suddenly discovered fiscal prudence. It's probably more due to a lousy bond market from a borrower's standpoint, or perhaps even a worsening of the city's credit outlook.

Oh gee. Who better to let us know how they are doing then the district themselves.

I wish someone other then themselves would tell us what kind of a job these goverment entities are doing.

Does this bother others?

Every agency around self assesses and reports they are doing swell.
Even the PDC.

There's something really rotten with having this approach on top of every agency having professional PR staff working full time to "educate" the public.

I think I recall that this sort of thing used to be published in the local paper or related at school board or community meetings to those interested enough to read or to attend. I don't remember that we used to receive so many full-color, professionally-developed, cheerleading mailers . . . not even from major utilities.

Why doesn't somebody sit up and realize that it's less expensive to issue press releases and hold press conferences than to pay to develop and distribute mass mailings?

We are the ones who ultimately pay for the cost of these pieces in increased fees, rates and ballot measures "for the kids."

Geez, I miss the warm, smelly mimeographed flyers my teachers used to give to me to take home to my parents. That was the extent of our glossy mailers.

This is mainly for two audiences: taxpayers and parents. But one main reason for its existence: to fulfill requirmements of the federal programs that attempt to make education a test prep program.

And if folks are critical and concerned about "overpaid" teachers and administrators and "PERS", why knock an attempt to show the general process, and what schools are attempting to do to educate kids?

I'm glad we speak Klingon in Multnomah County because that kid on the left has a very alien looking color.

Get rid of every PR position in every government/public agency. Make the head of each agency the face of their own organization, make them answer directly to the public. Same with all the high-dollar consultants. If the people already employed in a given agency can't get everything done, then we don't have the right people there to begin with.

Make the head of each agency the face of their own organization, make them answer directly to the public.

This flyer Jack got *is* them "answering directly to the public". And PPS is not an "agency" of the government.

But you've got a good idea. Let's start with other agencies--say, ODOT? From now on, the Oregon Department of Transportation is managed directly by citizens.

Okay: you've got a few thousand projects statewide, not enough budget, and everybody's screaming at you to get to their project priority first. What will you do next? Ready? Go!

I got that same mail, and I thought , bloody h*ll , I am not a parent and don't care about this , stop using public funds for it. What of the fire dep[t did it instead of fighting fires....

If any organization wanted to be a winner in the referendum world, having Oregon citizens vote on eliminating public agencies PR staffs would be a winner.

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