Recent letters to the editor
10/4/2010 - John Becker, City Manager is quoted as saying
Newark's budget is balanced. We are getting new business, ie, Burlington Coat Factory and Ross. We just
received a grant for new police officers. How can there be a fiscal emergency under these conditions?
Here is one example of where they could cut the
budget and not need a Utility TAX. In looking at the budget one can't help but notice a Human Resource budget of 2.35%
of the total budget or an amount of $877,600. This number seems very high compared to Pricewaterhouse Coopers
study of Human Resources Departments effectiveness where the average HR dept budget is about $1,462 per employee.
With less the 200 full time employees Newark should have a budget of less then $292,000 yet we have a budget 3 times higher
then average. How can you ask people of Newark for more money with these types of inefficiencies?
The City of Livermore
was facing many of the same problems as Newark. The wise City Manager eliminated all the contract employees and costly consultants
and trimmed the staff. The city is functioning well with a much smaller budget.
Bloat is a thing of the past for them.
Congressman Pete Stark announces a grant to the City of Newark.
The Newark Police Department will receive $758,682, which will support two police positions. This funding covers entry-level
salaries and benefits for three years. Since the City spent $1.5 million in overtime last year, the savings these two
officers will give them is another reason that they will not need the utility tax.
Link: Congressman Pete Stark announces a grant to Newark Police Department.
From an excerpt from the 9/30/2010 City Council Meeting Agenda, Putting it All Together, the rational is clear - “In our view, this land use
program must be fully in place BEFORE the economic recovery is in full swing…would squander the opportunities that are
now available.” In other words, it is more important to them to be
spending money on development projects than on crossing guards or many of the other services they say they can't
afford. What don't they understand about cutting back. Cut this development expense until we recover.
Use those funds for the services you say you can't afford.
Link: City Council agenda 9/23/2010 (be patient, it takes time to load - see page 67 of 85)
Growth is not the answer to Newark's problems.
Contrary to the Mayor's statements, no city in Southern Alameda
County has a Utility Tax. Most cities that have Utility Taxes got them before it was ruled that citizens had the right
to vote for them. Prior to that ruling the City Councils could just adopt the tax whether or not the citizens wanted
Counties and Cities with and without Utility Taxes.