Monday, August 23, 2010

City Council Demands

The El Segundo City Council recently met in a closed session meeting last Friday, August 20. Entering this emergency meeting with the intention of balancing the budget without the benefit of the L.A. County Fire merger, they decided to ask all city labor groups for an additional 12.2% concession. This brings the total proposed concession to 17.2% for all labor groups.

In previous council meetings, the council has stated that to "correct this ship" all 3 elements that make up this city, need to contribute; residents, businesses, and city employees. So far, it would seem to a prudent person that the City Council is balancing the budget on the backs of the city employees.
  • Residents have had roughly a 4% increase in their water bill.
  • Businesses have agreed to accept a 1% increase in the UUT (Utility User Tax), from 3% to 4%, pending a ballot vote in November. (Still lower than the area average)
  • Employees of the city have given a 5% concession (or its equivalent in layoffs) and are now being asked for an additional 12.2% of their compensation.
Does this seem like a balanced approach? Are there other sensible revenue streams that have not been discussed or for that matter understood? Why is the City Council trying to "correct this ship" by threatening to lay off 94 employees and/or impose hefty pay cuts? What kind of standard will this set for neighboring cities?

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