GUEST BLOG from: SpeakUpAlameda@gmail.com
ATTEND THIS WEEK’S MEETINGS • SPEAK OUT • PROTECT OUR CITY’S FUTURE!!
CITY of ALAMEDA CITY COUNCIL MEETINGS THIS WEEK
TUESDAY, APRIL 28, 6:30 PM SPEAK BEFORE CLOSED SESSION
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 29, 5:00 PM SPEAK BEFORE VOTE / AGENDA IS HERE.
Where’s the fire?
Why the rush to approve Mr. Russo’s proposal???
THE ISSUE YOU WANT TO SPEAK OUT ON
- Fire and Police Contracts expire December 2017 (in 2.5 years)
- City Manager Russo recently negotiated 5-year contract extensions of our fire and police unions, and put it on the April 29th City Council Meeting for approval
- Russo did not include our elected City Treasurer Kevin Kennedy and City Auditor Kevin Kearney (“The Kevins”) in the negotiation process
- Russo gave The Kevins and our city council exactly 2 weeks (!)––during tax season—to assess the contract extension.
- City Council Member Oddie and the Alameda Fire Union and Firefighters are pulling out the stops to get this approved: promoting it in newspapers and online in social media.
- Despite Mr. Oddie’s credentials (B.A. Finance, MBA) and in his recent op-ed, he got the numbers all wrong: Russo’s extension doesn’t reduce our OPEB liability “by $47 million over the next 30 years”.
- In fact, after 30 years of implementing this proposal, the city will still have $252.6 million in unfunded OPEB* liability that we cannot afford
*OPEB: Other Post Employment Benefits
OVER THE NEXT 2 YEARS, WE NEED TO:
1) CAREFULLY ASSESS OUR BUDGET
2) CAREFULLY CRAFT PUBLIC SAFETY CONTRACTS IN CONTEXT OF OUR BUDGET FORECASTS (See graphics below)
WHY? Read on.
THE CITY BUDGET PROJECTIONS SHOW THAT DEFICITS BEGIN BY THIS SAME TIME NEXT YEAR.
SOMETHING’S VERY WRONG WITH THIS PICTURE.
80% (!!) OF OUR BUDGET IS SPENT ON PUBLIC SAFETY SERVICES!
. . . AND SOMETHING IS VERY, VERY WRONG
IN OUR CITY FIRE AGENCY.
Some firefighters earning $90K/year, earn another 40% ($36K) in overtime pay per year!
Our city leadership and management should WANT to know what’s wrong before approving any extensions to the existing contract!
ATTEND WEDNESDAY’S CITY COUNCIL MEETING!
PROTECT OUR CITY’S FUTURE!!
MORE INFORMATION: SpeakUpAlameda@gmail.com
I’ve written a fact-based well-researched blogpost (see below or here) about Measure C on the June 5th ballot. Curiously, the firefighters are suddenly driving past my house, driving on my block alone (zig-zagging over from the main nearby throughfare streets) on a daily basis now. Is this meant to threaten and silence me?
They did this in 2011 when my op-eds online and in the local papers addressed the several significant failures we’ve suffered from at the hands of the Alameda Fire Department, and when I had my cameo in the SF Chronicle’s scathing article about city management. So this is a pattern, not just a happenstance.
Are they trying to bully me? Doesn’t it seem ridiculous in the 21st century? That we cannot have open dialogs about the facts without being threatened? Kind of proves the point I make in my op-ed if the ff’s feel they have to act out in this way, doesn’t it?
The fire services needs some serious downsizing in staff and facilities, per national firefighting industry standards. Pointing the obvious out—when everyone who runs the city is ignoring this basic point—is apparently not acceptable to those benefiting from the largess of pay and the high staff-to-call ratio in our city.
Tell me, just what is so wrong with demanding the city streamline fire services since streamlining services is also optimizing them?! AND saving a minimum of $5 million dollars per year?! It’s in everyone’s best interests. Including the firefighters who, as employees, will be happier if their buildings, vehicles, equipments and work better fits our needs!
And if you haven’t seen KTVU Channel 2’s report last night on the anniversary of Mr. Zack’s wrongful death, you really should. It’s here.
Go here. Sign it now. Go on, do it. Takes a moment.
PETITIONING: THE CITY OF ALAMEDA, CITY MANAGER RUSSO
TO: MOVE ALAMEDA CITY FIRE DEPARTMENT TO ALAMEDA COUNTY FIRE DEPARTMENT
WHY THIS IS IMPORTANT
We have a right to expect the city’s public safety services to be up to date with their rescue techniques and capabilities and to effect rescues no matter what.
A move to County Fire would:
1. Save the city 10% from the annual Fire budget, approx. $2.5M PER YEAR, and more if we include Emergency Medical Services.
2. Immediately elevate fire procedures and protocols (P&Ps) … Continue reading