Santa Ana Mayor Pro Tem Vince Sarmiento, in typical fashion, now wants us to believe that he is opposed to the ridiculous Measure PP – the lame ballot measure that is designed to give the Santa Ana City Council Members a 700% raise. The measure was born out of a desire by the Council majority to help Council Member Roman Reyna pay his bills, as he can’t hold a steady job. And as a high school dropout with no discernible skills, Reyna can’t find a good job to begin with.
The problem with Sarmiento’s flip-flopping is that we have a public record to turn to – the minutes of the July 5, 2016 City Council meeting where Sarmiento not only voted to place Measure PP on the ballot – he also praised the measure.
Here is the city’s transcript of what Sarmiento said and did at the July 5 meeting:
Councilmember Michele Martinez, commented that salary is long overdue and asked that health benefit cash-out be transparent.
Mayor Pro Tem Sarmiento, clarified that proposal is consistent with government Code, salary has not been adjusted for about 60 years; similar cities receive fulltime salary and have dedicated staff.
City Manager Cavazos, noted for the record that proposal is only for salary.
Councilmember Benavides, request staff consider other provisions of the Charter that are also outdated.
City Manager Cavazos, supports comprehensive review of the Charter perhaps at the next election cycle.
Councilmember Martinez, supports consideration for salary increase; concerned that health benefits not remedied with proposal.
City Attorney Carvalho, noted that impartial Analysis will be presented to state the facts and Arguments in favor and opposition will be authorized.
Clerk of the Council Huizar, reported that a calendar of deadlines for Arguments will be prepared upon approval and noticed as required.
Councilmember Benavides, would like to consider adding stipend for serving on regional boards and Committees that is not already compensated by regional board.
City Attorney Carvalho, noted that any additional benefits received in which there is a Cash value are not considered salary; proposal is a modest proposal in Comparison with other Comparable cities; if Council request a stipend recommends a set amount and needs to be included in the Charter.
Mayor Pro Tem Sarmiento, appreciates effort to move item forward.
Councilmember Reyna, noted that some regional boards are compensated, but most are not.
Councilmember Martinez, stated that membership on regional boards have proved beneficial to the City and many do not compensate.
1. Adopt resolutions.
A. RESOLUTION NO. 2016-059 – A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF SANTA ANA GIVING NOTICE OF A GENERAL MUNICIPAL ELECTION TO BE HELD IN THE CITY OF SANTA ANA ON NOVEMBER 8, 2016 FOR THE SUBMISSION TO THE VOTERS OF A QUESTION RELATING TO THE AMENDMENT OF THE CITY CHARTER IN REGARD TO COUNCIL COMPENSATION REFORM
B. RESOLUTION NO. 2016-060 – A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF SANTA ANA AUTHORIZING WRITTEN ARGUMENTS FOR PROPOSED AMENDMENTS TO THE SANTA ANA CHARTER
C. RESOLUTION NO. 2016-061 – A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF SANTA ANA SETTING FORTH THE LANGUAGE OF A BALLOT TITLE FOR A CITY CHARTER AMENDMENT REGARDING COUNCIL COMPENSATION REFORM TO BE INCLUDED ON THE BALLOT FOR THE 2016 GENERAL ELECTION
2. Approve guidelines for preparation of arguments for or against the proposed City Charter and Municipal Code Amendments, fix the date for the submission of Direct Arguments and Rebuttal Arguments, and post the notice for the argument process in accordance with the provisions of the California State Elections Code.
3. Authorize the City Attorney to prepare an impartial Analysis for each of the proposed City Charter Amendments to be submitted for consideration by the voters.
4. Direct staff to process all other documents required to proceed with
the proposed City Charter Amendments.
MOTION: Benavides SECOND: Amezcua
ΜΟΤΕ AYES: Amezcua, Benavides, Martinez, Pulido, Reyna, Sarmiento (6)
NOES: None (O)
ABSAN: None (O)
ABSENT: Tinajero (1)
Sarmiento also praised Measure PP when he spoke to the O.C. Register after the City Council voted unanimously to place the City Council pay raise measure on the ballot:
The increase is “an extremely modest request,” said Mayor Pro Tem Vincent Sarmiento, adding that the time Council members devote and the compensation are “so disproportionately out of whack.” “It’s well below minimum wage,” he said.
Yes, it is true that Sarmiento did not sign the Argument in Favor of Measure PP. There was no need to! Only three signatures are required on a ballot argument. Council Members Reyna, David Benavides and Angie Amezcua signed the argument.
Sarmiento clearly supported Measure PP, in words and in actions. Now he is embarrassed by this because we have exposed what a rip-off Measure PP is.
We have a part-time City Council! If they cannot make a living as part-time City Council Members they should quit playing politics and go get a real job. In Reyna’s case I suggest he consider going to continuation school and finishing High School first.
BTW – when was the last time you got a huge raise for NOT doing your job? The number one job of our City Council is to keep us safe. That is NOT happening in Santa Ana! Violent crime is way up with these knuckleheads in charge. The last thing we need to do is give this failed bunch a huge raise!
Fortunately this time Sarmiento is facing a real challenger – local family law attorney Jessica Cha. She has our endorsement and we encourage you to vote for her! Cha says she opposes Measure PP. And she, unlike our lame City Council, will vote to hire more police and make Santa Ana safe again.