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City, unions agree to cut $1.5M in pay raises

Original post made on Jul 14, 2009

New contracts with two of its major unions are expected to save the city $1.5 million over the next two years, though an ongoing general fund deficit of over $6 million promises to force "painful cuts" on city services next year.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, July 14, 2009, 11:15 AM

Comments (8)

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Posted by ORR
a resident of Castro City
on Jul 14, 2009 at 11:57 pm

City of Sunnyvale Council quickly and quietly approved generous raises for their department heads today while telling employees that "drastic cuts" and delayed raises were needed to stay within budget.
Go to Sunnyvale Council minutes under RTC 09-181, see the PDF stating 2% 09 and 2% '10 and 3% in 2011! Reason for salary increase: to recruit and retain 'competent' management employees. Yeah, my smelly foot. Has anyone checked out downtown Sunnyvale recently? The project is way over budget, the developers ran out of money pushing back completion and the existing merchants got kicked out thereby axing the city's own tax revenues. Real competent!! Meanwhile, NOVA funding keeps getting cut for people needing help seeking employment. Doesn't seem right.

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Posted by curious
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Jul 15, 2009 at 9:27 am

"We worked real hard" over many "Tuesday afternoons at 5 p.m." to come to an agreement, said council member John Inks. "We did try with the POA and the firefighters," he added, "but we just couldn't get it done."

That says it all. Mountain View like all California governments is saddled with unsustainable contracts with the public employees' unions. It is too easy to shrug your shoulders and pass the problem on to future taxpayers, like Mr. Inks and the rest of the Council did.

The main problem is that the state is heavily Democrat and the Democrat Party is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the unions. Well, maybe the trial lawyers own a piece of the action.

In a related story, the Assembly recently passed a bill to stop cities from being able to declare bankruptcy unless a board approves it. The board is, of course, appointed by the legislature and therefore the unions. So future taxpayers cannot get out from under the union contracts by declaring bankruptcy. The bill passed on a party line vote, the Democrats, that is to say the unions, naturally voted for it.

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Posted by Kathryn
a resident of Monta Loma
on Jul 15, 2009 at 10:48 am

I am actually very proud to live in Mountain View after coming to learn that the majority of our employees groups came to the table with the attitude that this is their community as well and voted to change their existing agreements. We are hearing about employees everywhere that are not willing to do what our City employees did.

Although a private sector worker myself, I have never had anything but wonderful experiences with the services that the City and the employees provide. We are world class city for so many reasons and the way our City is maintained is a very important part of that. I am more than willing to have my property taxes go to a City worker that is worth their duff and can provide for their families with a good wage and health care. I would rather that then my taxes going to pay for their emergency room bills when they are on subsidized health insurance through the County.

Thanks for stepping up City of Mountain View employees.

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Posted by curious
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Jul 15, 2009 at 11:25 am

Here is a link to a story on the bill to force cities to get the unions' approval before they declare bankruptcy.

"Dan Walters: Public worker unions are seeking more clout"
Web Link

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Posted by I agree with Kathryn
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jul 16, 2009 at 6:55 am

I second Kathryn's comments above. It's nice to see a counterpoint to all the blanket public sector-bashing that goes on across the MV Voice boards.

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Posted by Dave Williams
a resident of Waverly Park
on Jul 16, 2009 at 2:36 pm

I,too,agree with Kathyrn regarding the cooperation between the city employees and the city in this difficult financial period. Mountain View does an excellent job in providing services to our residents.

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Posted by curious
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Jul 17, 2009 at 1:05 pm

From the original story "No deal was reached with the major police and fire unions to renegotiate existing contracts with pay raises of over 3 percent a year."

So these unions, who represent about 60% of the city budget, refused to budge. They will get a pay raise while there is over 10% unemployment in CA.

I am sure the city employees are all lovely people but we cannot afford them.

Here is a related story "San Francisco's skyrocketing pension costs are untenable and both unions and politicians are to blame for abusing the system by negotiating extraordinary pension and retirement benefits without considering the unfair burden on future generations, according to a report issued Thursday."

Web Link

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Posted by Dave Williams
a resident of Waverly Park
on Jul 17, 2009 at 2:14 pm

One more comment:

The City needs to rememember the cooperation of SEIU and Eagles next year when the tough choices need to be made.

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