Our politicians in South Carolina (I'm sure this isn't unique) use deceptive offsetting when raising taxes. For example, they raise the state sales tax by 1% and call it a penny for progress. They say the 1% will go ONLY to the schools, and it does. The offsetting happens when they take that same 1% that they had been using the fund the schools from another budget area and offset money to their pet projects. The end result is the schools are no better off than before and the public is now paying 1% more in sales tax.
School money got tight in a nearby district a few years ago and they cut a bunch of after school programs. When they came back into some money the next year, they sent out a survey for parents asking which programs should be reinstated. The option "none" was not available.
Local governments *always* look to raise taxes first. They seldom look at what they can cut.