Why we need to dump collective bargaining – to end the union domination of California – and Chico! – politics

17 Mar

Thanks Dave, for this great article from David Crane:

https://www.hoover.org/research/bipartisan-opportunism-blame-californias-high-tax-rate

Crane gives us the history of collective bargaining in California, “which endowed police and other local personnel with the power to bargain collectively with the governments that employed them, handing political power over local budgets to government employees who were the principal beneficiaries of those budgets…”

Established by Ronald Reagan in 1968, this agreement “created a piggy bank to help finance GOP legislators.” But of course, it works for whichever party is in power, son when he became governor in 1975, Jerry Brown extended this agreement to school teachers and employees. This has resulted in elections controlled not by the Russians or the Iranians but by the public employee unions.

In Chico the biggest contributors in every election are the SEIU (management) and the CPOA (cops), with the IFFA (firefighters) coming in a close third.

In my opinion, this relationship is completely inappropriate – council approves hires, salaries, and benefits, sets staffing levels, and then accepts huge campaign contributions from the very people who benefit from their actions. I can’t believe the voters don’t see the conflict of interest in this system, but I’m guessing, most people don’t know. Everybody’s got their panties in a knot over the notion that Russia and Iran have influenced elections, but they don’t see corruption that is as plain as the nose on their faces. 

So City of Chico and County of Butte, both of whom have outrageous pension deficits, are considering Pension Obligation Bonds. This action would forever place the burden of the pension deficit – created by the ridiculous salaries, overly-generous benefits, and completely unrealistically low employee contributions approved by our “local leaders” – on the backs of the taxpayers. 

Instead, I suggest we dump collective bargaining – this could be done by city ordinance, and could be accomplished by a petition of citizens. Another option would be a city ordinance that cut the union PAC donations down to the same level as individual donations – about $1,000 per candidate. 

Crane agrees on point #1 – “The antidotes are to repeal collective bargaining rights for government employees or to offset these voters’ power with persistent support of our political parties from donors who care about the general interest (full disclosure: Govern for California provides such support), not to whine about one-party dominance.

Right now, as Doug Ose has said, “we are going backwards” as a state. Over-taxation has made housing too expensive, while infrastructure all over the state is failing. Chico Mayor Andrew Coolidge acknowledges the poor condition of streets in Chico, but advocates a POB, which would suck all the money out of the General Fund, which is made from allocations out of all the other funds – the streets fund, the park fund, the sewer fund, etc. You get the picture every time you drive or bike around town, or open your new sewer bill. Did you get the picture last night when council voted to INSTITUTE A FEE FOR USE OF UPPER PARK? 

Wake the hell up Chico, and write a note to your mayor – that’s andrew.coolidge@chicoca.gov

4 Responses to “Why we need to dump collective bargaining – to end the union domination of California – and Chico! – politics”

  1. Dave March 17, 2021 at 6:24 pm #

    In my opinion, this relationship is completely inappropriate – council approves hires, salaries, and benefits, sets staffing levels, and then accepts huge campaign contributions from the very people who benefit from their actions. I can’t believe the voters don’t see the conflict of interest in this system, but I’m guessing, most people don’t know.

    Most people are completely clueless and even if they weren’t most wouldn’t care. We have an ignorant and apathetic citizenry and that’s just the way the politicians and bureaucrats want it.

    The council negotiates the compensation of the people who give the councilors money for their campaigns. It’s not just inappropriate, it’s corrupt. But that’s the way the system works. Corruption is ingrained in this system.

    • Juanita Sumner March 18, 2021 at 5:23 am #

      I think our education system is the root problem. And of course that’s the teachers’ union.

  2. Scott Rushing March 18, 2021 at 9:49 am #

    Hi Juanita. Once again, excellent information. Generous pensions are crippling Chico and California. As a critic of CPD, I can confirm that; CPD already receives 54% of the cities annual budget, CPD is hiring new officers backed by the new council, CPD is offering a $10,000 bonus to lateral transfers of officers. CPD is expensive. The expense is expanding. Your new council is approving the costs without considering the future and they are ignoring the present. There are also NO diversity or screening conditions placed on the chief by your council. That is appalling in my POV. Scott

    On Wed, Mar 17, 2021 at 4:48 PM Chico Taxpayers Association wrote:

    > Juanita Sumner posted: ” Thanks Dave, for this great article from David > Crane: > https://www.hoover.org/research/bipartisan-opportunism-blame-californias-high-tax-rate > Crane gives us the history of collective bargaining in California, “which > endowed police and other” >

    • Juanita Sumner March 18, 2021 at 11:47 am #

      Thanks Scott, I don’t think you have to be a “cop hater” to be outraged by the expense of police in Chico, especially since we still have a high rate of crime here.

      One thing I’d like to mention is the amount of drugs we have circulating in Chico. The Enterprise Record did a story the other day about a guy whose life was ruined by drugs, without asking him where he gets the stuff. When I questioned the editor he told me, “We’re doing it to show that, like all of us, they’re human.” Really? How about showing us how they keep getting the illegal drugs?

      And the cops literally don’t care, I had a Chico cop snarl “I don’t care!” at me when I tried to show him some tiny baggies I found under the hedge in front of my tenant’s house. “Bindles” – little inch-by-inch plastic zip lock bags that hold one hit amounts of nasty drugs like heroin, cocaine, and methamphetamine (crank). Their policy is that if they didn’t see the crime with their own eyes they won’t investigate. But they also told me that I can’t detain or “arrest” anybody even if I catch them point blank on my property doing illegal drugs. So, this is how they keep from having to do any investigative work – monkey’s who see no evil don’t have to do anything about it.

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