Mary Suhm is a very smart, very savvy administrator. On Saturday, the city manager was quoted in Dallas’ Only Daily Newspaper that, in terms of the budget, “everything is going to be very tight for us.”

Why does this make her so smart, given that so many of us have been wailing about this for months? Because she probably already knew on Saturday that November’s sales tax collections were almost 7 percent better than budgeted. This is a vast improvement over the October numbers, which were a disaster – 13 1/2 percent below budget. (Our handy chart, with the budget projections, is here.)

So, when she briefs the council today on the financial situation, Suhm will be able to look very wise and in control. Yes, things aren’t good, she will say. But trust me – we’re only 3.4 percent down for the first two months of the fiscal year. I have things well in hand.

And the council, being the council, will believe her, despite the economic gloom and doom that everyone else sees.

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