I was surprised to learn that the Charter Review Commission was having a public event that will be live streamed on Facebook showcasing the city manager of Watertown.
Full disclosure: My dog, Kate, and I hunt up there.
In the Saratogian article Bob Turner offers the following, “Watertown and Saratoga Springs are similar size cities and comparable budgets. Voters can ask her for themselves how she is able to run their city with one city manager instead of five deputies.”
Mr. Turner fails to mention that Watertown has been beset by major tax increases. In fact, we have no idea what the condition of their services are but it is reasonable to assume that they did not resort to such high tax increases without draconian cuts to services first.
Consider the graph below comparing Saratoga Spring’s tax increases and Watertown’s. In 2015 Watertown raised their taxes 10.4% tax.
A simple Google search of Watertown government produces a variety of stories about conflicts among its elected officials and the fact that there is a candidate running on a platform to end the city manager form of government.
Now I am not saying that Ms. Addison is not doing a good job under some very trying circumstances. I expect she is. I am in no position to really judge her city and judging by his remarks, Mr. Turner appears to share my ignorance.
If Ms. Addison is as good a manager as Mr. Turner asserts, she will tell her audience and Mr. Turner that it would be an error to use Watertown’s experience to decide on the merits of continuing the employment of our city’s deputy commissioners.