Still mad about the cancellation of this year’s Santa Ana Cinco de Mayo event? Well guess what? It looks like that is the least of our worries. Apparently the Santa Ana City Council majority has driven our city to the brink of bankruptcy, according to the Voice of OC.
The Voice of OC quoted Deputy City Manager Robert Cortez about the situation. He said “the current situation is not sustainable.” However Cortez makes a whopping $294,881.41 in pay and benefits, according to Transparent California. The median annual Chief Executive Officer salary in Los Angeles, CA is $192,976, as of April 29, 2018, according to payscale.com. Cortez is making more than most CEOs and he is just the Deputy City Manager! Perhaps that is part of the problem in Santa Ana?
But that’s not all. Our current City Council majority also made all these financial mistakes in the past few years:
- They gave huge raises to all the city’s top executives
- They hired two City Managers in a row that were a disaster and massively overpaid them! The current City Manager is one of the top paid City Managers in the entire State of California.
- This City Council majority also bamboozled our voters last year into supporting a raise for the City Council members. This was done primarily to benefit then Councilman Roman Reyna as he was finding it hard to find a real job (the City Council jobs are part-time). Of course Reyna ended up losing his seat (due in great part to a picture of him with alleged members of the Mexican Mafia that circulated online). And it figures that he is running again for a different Ward this November. He wants that raise he missed out on!
- The City Council majority kept on wasting money like drunken sailors even though experts were warning them about the coming public employee pension crisis
The problem is massive. City executives said during the public discussion the city faces shortfalls of $8.1 million this fiscal year, $17.1 million next fiscal year, which starts July 1, and $31.9 million the following fiscal year, according to the Voice of OC. The projected shortfalls, if not addressed, total $57 million between now and June 30, 2020.
So how are our esteemed City Council members proposing to fix this mess? Have they offered to give back their raises? (That would be a resounding no by the way). No instead here are their proposals:
- Closing the city’s main library on Sundays ($50,000 savings each year)
- cutting four staff positions for summer sports programs ($50,000 savings each year)
- getting the Santa Ana Unified School District to pay half of school crossing guard costs ($424,000)
- generating nearly $200,000 in new parking enforcement revenue
- they are asking city employees to take pay cuts
- they are banking on making money from taxes on marijuana sales
- Council members have also expressed interest, including on Tuesday, in asking voters in November to tax themselves more by raising the sales tax rate
Besides giving back their pay raise and rolling back the raises they stupidly gave to city executive it is also time for the City Council to give back their city-paid cars. Please show me any other part-time workers who get fully paid company cars?
The last thing we need is to re-elect any of our moronic City Council majority members. Fortunately their scheme to illegally extend their term limits was foiled by Santa Ana Mayor Miguel Pulido. Now we need to make sure Reyna loses in November. And we need to defeat his pal Phil Bacerra too.
It is time to turn a new chapter in Santa Ana and that starts with getting rid of the awful politicians like Vince Sarmiento, David Benavides and Sal Tinajero, who have virtually bankrupted our city. Fortunately Benavides and Tinajero will term out this November.
I wonder if Councilman Jose Solorio is having second thoughts yet about allying with Sarmiento, Benavides and Tinajero? Oops!