Hello, not that all, or any of you, for that matter, want to hear from me, but you all need to know that there are multitudes of constituents (voters) in Antioch like me that know that a sales-tax increase for our city will just be another black mark against living or doing business here.
That this measure ever made it to the ballot box is incredible, but it is not too late for supporters of the measure to reverse themselves and admit that it was not a well-conceived idea. Again, I reiterate that while well-staffed police and fire ranks are a necessity in our city, one staffed by overcompensated personnel, especially at this incredibly difficult time of job and home losses resulting in calamity cut-backs in revenues for the city, is akin to licensed larceny.
Those responsible for agreeing to the 3-percent-per-year formula of retirement compensation for police and fire should without exception be turned out of office and never again allowed to occupy public positions requiring reasoning and basic math skills. No public agency, especially one in California, can afford to retire people at 90 to 100 percent of salary, at a last year inflated salary, and as early as age 50 to boot!
If we cannot by law modify those unjustified salary contracts, then we should terminate employment of personnel unwilling to voluntarily accept realistic pay and benefits packages, and hire from the ranks of the unemployed whose minds are open to honest reimbursement for honest work. Instead of just axing police and fire positions, ax only those who refuse to give up their undeserved, inflated retirement packages. That will make the determination of whom to get rid of very easy.
If all public-safety personnel accept permanent cuts to reasonable levels, no additional cuts in personnel will be required other than temporary pay cuts. After all, these people are not congressmen or senators (read: royalty).
Drastic times call for drastic measures. Support and vote for responsible people like Arne Simonsen and Gary Agopian as a start to a return to sanity. Elect no one not sane, responsible, honest, deeply ingrained with common sense and their self-interest clearly secondary to public interest.
James C. Morris, Sr., Antioch