Of course the real cause behind the street light dimming is the inability of the council to raise taxes at will. So as a backlash against this prohibition, the Mayor and his administration cut something that the taxpayers will feel.
Yes they could have cut a high level bureaucrat or two from the payroll and paid for plenty of light for the streets. But then the taxpayers never would have noticed the cut. Life would have gone on with hardly a blink.
That would have been too easy for taxpayers.
Thus we have the street light fiasco.