Tag Archives: Joe Azzarito Chico Taxpayer

Joe Azzarito: do not let Orme spend another $22,800 of our money on a survey that is nothing more than a marketing tool for a tax. 

9 Jun

Sorry this post is kind of a mess, I don’t know what’s up with word press, but the settings are whack. It’s kind of hard to read, but try anyway, it’s worth it. 

I’ve heard it through the grapevine that council is currently being “bombarded” with requests to “de-fund the police department”. Well, they are also being “bombarded” with requests and demands to drop the sales tax increase measure. Which, frankly, an intelligent person would see as de-funding the police department, since that department is currently the biggest part of the city budget.

In fact, across California, financial experts are pointing to “public safety” as our financial problem – salaries well over $100,000/year, overtime written into their contracts, spiking by way of accruing vacation and sick time – these contracts are the hole in our little dinghy, and we’re sinking fast.   Management employees are way overpaid, but they’re vastly outnumbered by over compensated public safety employees, who are the primary drivers of the pension deficit or Unfunded Actuarial Liability. 

I’m not saying get rid of the police department, I’m saying, cut the costs and make it viable again. Not only do we need to rework the contracts, we need to train these people to stop pulling out their piece at the drop of a splinter.  As Scott  Rushing has pointed out time and time again, these cowboys cost us a lot of money with their behavior, triggering lawsuits that cost the taxpayers millions. 

So yeah, a demand for new, more sustainable contracts would mean more, better police that protect everybody. 

Here’s one citizen’s demand – thanks Joe Azzarito for answering the call to duty and sending an email to council. Joe points out, this is a regressive tax that hits lower income people harder – people making less than $40,000 a year on the hook for pensions of 70 – 90% of salaries over $100,000/year. He also points out that city staff is misleading the public about the true costs of this measure – starting with another $22,800 for a consultant to run their campaign, on top of $22,800 and plenty of $taff time already spent. Ending with a bond – and none of the money restricted to anything.

And, I’ll point out – the letters Mark Stemen has been circulating are all FORM LETTERS. How much conviction do you think it takes to sign a form letter written by your college professor (the guy who hands you a grade)?  Chico Taxpayers are intelligent enough to come up with their own material, thankyouverymuch.  So, let’s take Joe’s example and get busy “bombarding” council with your thoughts on a sales tax increase. 

 

Chico City Council Members,

As I have said many times before, DO NOT propose a sales tax increase, NOT NOW, NOT EVER. Our citizens can least afford this highly regressive tax increase so that you, city management and city staff can live the good life while we regular citizens suffer with no services that address our needs first. The proposal should never be an unrestricted simple majority tax to begin with. It makes possible uses unconscionable to all of us living day to day but most especially when thousands of local people are out of work, barely affording our housing costs and doing without many necessities. To mislead citizens that this sales tax is a panacea for what ails us is a blatant lie. You know full well that the proceeds from such an increase, quite possibly far less than you anticipate, will not be enough to even cover the revenue bond you hope to float – which by the way, no one talks about except Mark Orme and his toady Chris Constantin.

Trash the sales tax idea, and by the way, do not authorize another survey at gobs of money to satisfy yourselves that wee little people will go for it. Months ago at one of your “dog and pony” open council meetings, I asked Orme why 400 people who were 70% in favor of a tax represented 120,000 people. His answer: “Not everyone votes!”  But I do, and I will remember to vote down every one of your outlandish ideas that do not address real needs and not “make believe feel good ones”. As to your closed meetings, I am totally disgusted at not being able to attend.  How dare you do the crap you do without an audience. I respond to Chico Engaged, which should be changed to Chico Enraged. What is going on is nothing but pandering to a small minority and not at all essential business.

In summation, do not let Orme spend another $22,800 of our money on a survey that is nothing more than a marketing tool for a tax.  Instead, read about the California Rule, as if you did not know what that is, and find a way to cut back 50% or more on all of your salaries, perks, medical benefits and, most especially the tremendous UNFUNDED PENSION LIABILITY, that city workers should be paying for totally – since from that comes their pensions — their expense not mine. We would when have plenty of money to perform all of our collective needs, not just those of a chosen few.

Joe Azzarito