Too Late & Some Inside Information : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

My daughter just got back from visiting her dad who is a mayor of a small town in Texas. She was telling me some of the things her dad shared with her about Y2K. I can't verify any of this but I know my daughter would not tell a lie.

(1) The city just put in new computer system which was suppose to be Y2K compliant. Had an outside firm come in to test. It was not. Don't know if they can get every thing fixed in time. Y2K computer specialists are hard to find. Having alot of trouble with their payroll.

(2) Mayor is under some rules by Federal government on Y2K disclosure. He can get in trouble if he tells the complete truth and only tells the city council part of what he knows. So city council thinks its not as bad as it is. Tries to make everything sound OK when it isn't. Thinks it will be worse than we can imagine.

(3) They are putting in manual everything they can (jail - 3 holding cell), water system upgrade, etc. Also going to manual system for tornado/disaster/early warning system. Hoping to complete in two months. Most important to them. Since they have a water tower will probably try to gravity feed to give water to people from tower.

(4) Converting water system to manual equipment still takes power to flush through the lines. Doesn't expect power grid to work in most areas of US.

(5) Cities/towns on Federal Grading sytem for Y2K compliance.

(6) Medical Equipment - No one wants to take responsibility, the vendor or manufacturer. So like pulling teeth to get any information.

(7) A very big worry is terrorism. The kind where bombs go off, homes attached by automatic weapons, because of flood of immigrants coming into this country. Following census.

(8) Some equipment can't be tested and they are also afraid to test some stuff right now because if tested and fails not might be able to get it started again. Too late to get replacements. Want to keep it running as long as possible.

(9) Talking to other mayors in other cities. Hard to get anything done. Even if you know what to fix there is reems of paperwork to wade through, people it has to go through, etc, before you can get it done. No way they can get everything done in time. Very frustrating.

(10) My daughter has asked her dad to keep her informed of any major developments he finds out about Y2K, so she will better know how to prepare. Her dad is preparing his family for the worst case.

(11) Staffed the park with barbaque pits, picknick tables so people can cook outside if they have to, or use fire for warmth.

(12) Would like to do more but hands seem to be tied because of budgets. Too bad they don't start a hugh food bank.. Even when they budget money seems it cost more because of problems they didn't plan for, so other things can't get done.

This is a small town, can you imagine what it will be like in a large city....

-- inside secret (, February 15, 1999


WOW! I'll be back to THIS thread often!!!!! Keep up the GREAT job!!!!! <:)=

-- Sysman (, February 15, 1999.

Thanks so much for letting us know this. I hope you are sincere in your reporting. I hope some of what your saying is lies...but deep down inside I have a feeling it is not lies..if this stuff is true this is very scarey. Please keep me informed through this board.

Look forward to hearing from you!


-- PMM (, February 15, 1999.


are you a phm? :)

-- Andy (, February 15, 1999.

That's it! Picnic tables and barbeque pits - THAT'S the answer we've been looking for. Whew, I don't know about you people, but this is a load off my mind.


-- E. Coli (, February 15, 1999.

Andy, I'm a relative newbe here, what's a phm? <:)=

-- Sysman (, February 15, 1999.

inside secret,

Thanks for the list.

>(7) < snip > immigrants < snip > Following census.

Hmmmm... Hadn't thought of that particular angle.

-- No Spam Please (, February 15, 1999.

Inside, or anyone else, any idea what rules this is in reference to??:

"Mayor is under some rules by Federal government on Y2K disclosure. He can get in trouble if he tells the complete truth"

-- Brooks (, February 15, 1999.

Hi, IS, your post has a strong ring of truth to it. As already requested, please return and give us updates whenever possible, using the same heading but with No. 2, No. 3, etc. Thank you.

-- Old Git (, February 15, 1999.

"...Only tells the city council part of what he knows." I have a lot of trouble with this one. I know of no federal rules that would preclude this information from being shared with the city council. Most towns and cities have a city manager form of government, the mayor is just a figurehead so to speak. Perhaps this town does have a mayoral government, but still this information more in likely would be shared under executive session. Although this type of information would not be the type to fall under executive session rules.

I have covered many a city council meeting in various parts of the country. This type of information would be (remediation efforts) would not be hanled by the mayor, but by the department head for that particular department. The information regarding the remediation would be delivered under reports to the council by the various department heads.

I just don't buy this part of the story, that federal regulations prevent open discussion regarding remediation efforts. This is a budgetary issue as well as a technological one. As a budgetary issue, the council has to vote in full as to what measure to take regarding remediation, or at the very least, hear reports from department heads in open session.

-- temple dog (, February 15, 1999.

Sorry but something about this post doesn't quite seem right. I'd prefer more data points coming in from other small towns.

At the Oakland Y2K Around The Bay meeting there was an Oakland City Council person present, and someone working on Y2K fixes with the City of Berkeley. Also a California State Senator. There were quite open.

Doesn't mean things look good. They're still in fix-it and contingency planning mode.


-- Diane J. Squire (, February 15, 1999.

gotta go with Diane's view...if US mayors were this alarmed, I think there'd be a leee-tle more general awareness. After all, mayors have staffs and staffs have leaks.

-- a (a@a.a), February 15, 1999.

If the little city in Texas is going to great lengths to put in manual backups, there's city worker's doing the work who are asking why this is being done. Most people in Texas I would imagine have a barbecue (ever had Texas barbecue?). And most people have a table at home to eat on. Sometimes we just put the plate on our lap and munch down! There's always been a problem with illegal immigrants coming over the border, I don't see any military police action stopping them and there won't be any stopping them during Y2K. Maybe they can hire some of those immigrants to sit on donkey's and attach it to a wheel to pump water up to the water tower and then gravity flow it back down to the city folk. Work in shifts and then have a barbecue in the park! I doubt this story, just doesn't make any real sense to me.

-- DoubtingThomas (, February 15, 1999.

Another Polly Troll trying to make us look foolish.

-- RobbY2k (, February 15, 1999.

Just plucked this off of Free Republic website. Totally unvalidated, so this thread looked like a good spot for it.


Feb 15, 1999 EJT

Just received the following email from my brother, a civil engineer for Dodson-Stilson, Inc, in Columbus, Ohio


The firm that I work for is designing a facility which will contain several diesel powered generators that can produce electricity. There will be three large storage tanks that will hold diesel fuel. The facility is supposed to be built before the end of this year. The purpose of this facility is to produce 15% of the electricity for the City of Columbus in case the nuclear power plants in Ohio are shut down on Jan 1, 2000. Apparently, Columbus gets 15 % of its power from Nuclear power plants (probably the Davis - Besse plant in Cleveland). The other 85% comes from coal burning power plants. The cost of the facility is going to be about $1.5 million.


Feb 15, 1999

-- Nikoli Krushev (, February 15, 1999.

I tend to be somewhat open to Inside's post. Some details may not be totally accurate (not deliberate, remember the game, Pass It On?) A friend who is friendly with a local grocery store manager told me today that this manager feels he is being 'watched', (by superiors, by Fed? I don't know, will question her further tomorrow, ran out of time) re large food purchases. Told her the warehouses only have so much (duh?) and the reasoning is to prevent people 'hoarding' more than they need in order to profit by it when things get bad. My first actual local hint that we're not 'paranoid' to prepare! :-)

-- Virlie (, February 16, 1999.

In Calif. I spoke with several city and county officials in a selected area. Either the people I spoke with were good voice actors or there was not as much cross communication between local governments as I would have expected under the circumstances (Jan. 1999). I suppose this could be pegged as a concern. A near universal concern was the power company, PG&E. The only place where it did not seem to be a big concern was at PG&E itself. Another concern was with the lack of leadership at the state level (Wilson, outgoing gov.). This was in response to an inquiry as to what state and fed. level mandated standards were being adhered to. Overall, the responses in Calif. local govts. to Y2k seem to be best characterized by my little unscientific poll as uneven and unorganized. This would be in some contrast to the Texas situation, if the report is to be believed, as they appear at least to be actively trading information and experiences with neighboring local governments and thinking in terms of fallback plans. Internally, I know in some local governments, people are actively avoiding holding public meetings, taking minutes, and issuing memos; instead, they are using transparencies. One point source tells me that windowing is remediation technique of choice, and that hospitals are having a particularly difficult time with all the different medical equipment that needs to be checked. I have made one detailed email inquiry requesting a written response; so far (several weeks) nothing back.

-- Ann Y Body (annybody@nowhere.disorg), February 16, 1999.

For y'all geography challenged::

Davis-Besse is in Toledo.

Perry is in Perry, East-North-East of Cleveland (h'aint much North or north-east)


-- Chuck, night driver (, February 16, 1999.

Load of codswallop, if you ask me. Everyone in a small town knows everyone else, pretty much, and the City Council couldn't be kept in the dark. Pure Disinfo, or some high schooler having fun. (Q: Is your daughter's dad your ex?)

-- Spidey (, February 16, 1999.

Spidey, are you refering to Inside's #2 comment? And are you saying that people in small towns don't lie to each other because they know each other?

-- Chris (, February 16, 1999.

I would like to comment on this thread. I can attest to the ability of some people in power keeping information from others. Our small town of 2500 always has some political sh*tstorm involving the mayor or chief of police or city council. Nothing ever gets done because everyone is trying to find the most advantageous time to place a knife in the back of the other officials. Currently, the police chief/city manager (yes, one man-both jobs) has been fired (hand in the till). The left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing and can't get their act together to do anything constructive. I am sure this scene plays out in many small towns in Texas (I have read several cases of similar things in the newspapers).

On a semi-positive note, the next town over from us (10 miles) has at least appointed someone to be the Y2K person. However, that was about 3 months ago and I have yet to hear one word about Y2K in that town. It is soooo aggravating. Okay, let me hop down off of this soapbox and go buy some more seeds. BTW, we just got some chickens and rabbits! I was thinking I would get tired of eating chicken all the time...but doesn't rabbit taste "just like chicken"? :-)

-- Sharon in a small town in Texas (, February 16, 1999.


Think you're right about most towns in California.

On February 24th, according to State Senator John Vasconcellos, they are having some kind of open Y2K meeting up in Sacramento. He's invited the press and the public.

When I have more details, I'll post.


-- Diane J. Squire (, February 16, 1999.

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