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Outlook 2010: more tough times ahead

Original post made on Jan 8, 2010

The state budget is once again short many billions of dollars. And when Sacramento is desperate for money the squeeze is put on local governments and school districts, so watch for further contractions at the local level. Just like last year.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, January 8, 2010, 10:51 AM

Comments (9)

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Posted by kanank
a resident of Shoreline West
on Jan 8, 2010 at 3:18 pm

Mountain View city is irresponsible with its finances. It is doling out 100s of thousands in pensions to its employees and citi managers while cutting services. it should be the other way around. It seems they want to money from people and divide among themselves and whatever littlebit of dime and nickel left is what gets spent on taking care of people's business. Shame on you Mountain view,palo alto,Oakland,sunnyvale,etc..

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Posted by USA
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jan 8, 2010 at 3:18 pm

USA is a registered user.

This is more BS from the tax-and-spend people from Mountain View's pink palace to the halls of Congress. The real problem is that if you spend money like a monkey on crack, you have less money for the things you really need.

This is the money spent by CA state and local governments over the last 10 years, Web Link

If we could just back down our spending to what we had just a few years ago, we would be in good shape instead of this annual carp about closing cutting schools, closing state parks, and furloughing workers.

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Posted by Don Frances
Mountain View Voice Editor
on Jan 8, 2010 at 3:41 pm

Don Frances is a registered user.

Regarding in particular the comment by kanank, here's a comment I made earlier today on the alternate comment thread for this story...

I'd like to clarify something we maybe didn't explain properly: having city employees retire and collect pensions while returning to work at an hourly wage (even a high one) is actually much cheaper for the city. This is for two main reasons, 1) the city no longer needs to cover those employees' health benefit costs, and 2) the majority (I think around 75%) of the pensions are paid out by CalPERS, not by Mountain View proper.

Overall, from the taxpayer's perspective, this may seem like a screwy and/or unfair system. But from the perspective of someone running a city and managing that particular city's budget, this is a money-saver.

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Posted by Enough!
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jan 8, 2010 at 4:51 pm

I think you miss the point of all the griping Don. We are outraged by the claim that these retirees are irreplaceable so they must be brought back. On face value, it looks like a money grab. I find it hard to believe they are that important. It would appear more the system is being gamed as indicated by many others on the threads. And regarding quality, sounds fishy that they spring this on the city without forewarning, apparently catching everyone off guard. What does seems say about management overall at City Hall.

And even if 75% of funding for the pensions comes from the state, its still the taxpayer that carries the burden.

I don't get you really. Your reporters do a hec of a job on this, and you come out with some sort of editor's remorse, somewhat trying to soften the sting of your reporters' hard work and expose. And I certainly don't think you can claim your trying to be objective by doing so.

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Posted by Buck Rogers
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jan 8, 2010 at 10:12 pm

This article reminds me of something an old friend of mine once told me. You may recognize him, he said:

"Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain and most fools do."

It is time to get busy, not go on and on about how bad things are or worse yet, how bad they are about to get. Doing that is just stinking thinking. It could always get worse, or better. Does anyone have a crystal ball that you know. If they do, ask them when it will get better and then we can all just sit under a bush with a sack lunch and wait. Better yet, we could just throw a big pity party and invite the whole town.

If you can't make it here, you can't make it anywhere.

Happiness is a state of mind and only you can decide how happy you are and it has nothing to do with the economy or the stuff you have or don't have.

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Posted by dfb
a resident of Shoreline West
on Jan 10, 2010 at 4:20 pm

There are several options for dealing with the budget issues. The ones mentioned here are the easiest to implement. For example, employees elsewhere have allowed cuts to pay or benefits (health, retirement, sick/vacation) to save jobs. It is always a difficult thing to do, but is possible. In addition, the state, UC system, and other agencies have instituted mandatory furloughs to save some money. Either way, I do not envy Duggan or the City Council. Damned if you do, damned if you don't. I think the city will ultimately need concessions from the various unions to balance the budget.

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Posted by Scott
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Jan 11, 2010 at 4:51 pm

I wish we could spend our money more wisely in Mountain View.

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Posted by Karen Green
a resident of Shoreline West
on Mar 14, 2010 at 4:02 am

Scott, here's an example of how your money is not being spent wisely in Mountain View:

Web Link

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Posted by Mel
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 14, 2010 at 7:23 pm

Great link in the SJ Merc. Web Link

Here's the $200K plus salary club for our over-spent city.

Maybe instead of appealing to Google for handouts we might try these folks.

Duggan Kevin C City Manager $264,969
Alameda Richard P Batt Chief $262,064
Young Michael S Fire Chief $258,633
Del Carlo Clifford Fire Cptn $247,050
Locke Robert F Fasd Dir $246,612
Vermeer Scott S Police Chief $241,216
Owen John M Batt Chief $232,602
Wester Michael D Fire Engr $231,167
Miguel John Fire Cptn $229,834
Bond Zachary E Fire Cptn $226,777
Emerson C Shelley Sr Asst Ca $225,366
Levin Nadine P Asst City Mngr $224,290
Muela David A Csd Dir Com Srv $218,968
Custodio Dennish Fire Cptn $218,771
Varano James F Fire Cptn $218,721
Remson-Lazarus Cathy J Pwd Dir $214,919
Hawkes Steven W Fire Batt Chf $211,824
Trammell Wade H Fire Captain $211,411
Demers Corey A Fire Engr/Para $210,081
Biakanja Jim S Fire Cptn $206,035
Zarubin Steve Fire Engr $204,765
Leal Kenneth J Police Sgt $204,290
Lopez Manuel A Police Lieut $204,254
Bosel Max J Police Captain $202,522
Vandenberg Ted A Fire Cptn $202,163

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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