SLO’s city finances are not sustainable, and the outlook is bleak with reduced services and staff layoffs. If there is a special election in June, this will provide the City Council an excellent opportunity to resolve structural deficiencies. The salaries and benefits of all city employees are more than 80 percent of the city budget, while the state average is 60 percent.
The city cannot meet the needs of its citizens with only a 20 percent discretionary budget. I am requesting that the City Council step forward and place three ballots in the election. The first measure would shift the funding of the employee portion of retirement contribution from the city to the employee (currently the city pays both employee and employer portions). The second is to have a second tier reduced salary/retirement benefit plan for all new employees. The third is to modify or repeal binding arbitration. Voters in the November 2010 elections passed similar ballot measures in multiple cities in California, therefore, the City Council would not be treading in new territory. If you agree, please take the time to write or appear before the City Council to express your views.