Too Little, Too Late
During the 2011 election, I strongly suggested the city go back to the unions and tell them to re-negotiate their previous lucrative salaries and pensions or the city should start out-sourcing jobs. Sure, last year a couple of unions did not take any pay increases or they accepted contributing larger amounts to their pension and health care programs. Some unions also accepted a twotier employment program for future employees. But no incumbent candidate suggested out-sourcing of current jobs. Like the previous councils, they did not take on the entrenched unions, but kicked the can down the road. So far it appears the present council will be doing the same.
Glendale fire officials are currently proposing reorganizing their department in order to save the city $2.5 million annually and the police department is proposing eliminating youth programs and two officer positions saving the city $375,000 annually. Both proposals seem to be a little too late. Their actions are like trimming the fat off the meat where the real problems are continued high salaries, pensions and medical benefits within their departments. And, of course, an antiquated seniority system with all its problems remains.
City employees receiving
annual pensions of $100,000 or more for life are unsustainable. Especially in light of the fact many city employees retire in their 50s or 60s and statistically will be living 15 to 25 years beyond retirement.
Writing letters to the press or appearing before the [Glendale] City Council and complaining of closing libraries, parks and other city services seems a little too late, considering the public had an opportunity to vote out two incumbent candidates last April but only voted out one.