× Expand Brandon: 'If you spend unlimited amounts of money, you can create utopia, but no one will be able to afford to live there.' × Since taking office in 2003, Why has the fiscal prudence you've advocated over the years failed to take shape? The budget policies I've talked about have all passed. I'm batting 1.000 for budget policy, from eliminating structural deficits to eliminating borrowing from operating expenses to holding a very bright fiscal line on the non-contingent reserve we've allocated for unexpected expenses. Those three, I think, are very strong policies. But on the budget amendments that actually reduce the amount of money, it's almost against the culture of the council. In 29 years, the council has never once reduced the amount of money the mayor has put into his or her budget. The council has taken the executive budget and used it as a floor, not a ceiling. We've never said, 'Okay, that's how much the executive wants to spend; now we're going to spend less." We always spend more.