On principle, Ward 4 Missoula City Council member Jesse Ramos has never cast a ‘yes’ vote for a city budget since he was elected, however, he did find some bright spots in the proposed 2021 budget.

Along with fellow fiscal conservatives John Contos and Sandra Vaseka, they cast the three ‘no votes’ for the budget.

“I just wanted to make it clear that myself, Sandy and John voted against the budget as a whole,” said Ramos. “We were not voting against the police budget in any sense. We greatly support the police. I have not voted for a single budget yet since I've been on council simply because I do not agree with the way that it allocates dollars and the way it uses dollars. I don't think that it's using tax dollars efficiently and I think the government is in roles that they have no business being in.”

Ramos did have words of praise for Mayor Engen when it came to funding the police budget.

“I am greatly supportive of the police budget,” he said. “I do think that the Mayor and the City Council did a great job. I mean, there was a sacrificial motorcycle. I unfortunately missed that vote but at the end of the day, sacrificing that motorcycle was less than I expected would come out of the budget talks. So I thought that was good. There was an effort to cut an officer, and that was voted down 11 to one so it was kind of nice not being the only one for once voting ‘no’.”

On principle, Ward 4 Missoula City Council member Jesse Ramos has never cast a ‘yes’ vote for a city budget since he was elected, however, he did find some bright spots in the proposed 2021 budget.

Ramos has long been an opponent of the Missoula Redevelopment Agency and other ways the city spends the taxpayers’ money.

“Everywhere from the MRA (Missoula Redevelopment Agency), the MRA budget was in there,” he said. “There's a wide variety of spending decisions that I've tried to cut in previous budget cycles. As of now, all of those issues are still being funded. I still think that the city is completely overstaffed. I think that our efficiency with city workers is still incredibly dismal. I think that the level of corporate welfare coming out of the MRA budget is absolutely absurd. So, any number of things are why I voted against it and having talking to Sandy and John, and that's why they ultimately decided against it as well.”

Read a summary of the city budget here.

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