June 30, 2010
Contact: Lani Lutar, 619-838-9065 or email@example.com
Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, 619-997-2495 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Public Testimony of Lani Lutar, President & CEO,
San Diego County Taxpayers Association in opposition to the
three ballot measures submitted by Mr. Jason Everitt
City of San Diego Rules Committee, June 30, 2010
We understand and respect that there will be occasions when we have differing views with organized Labor on policy issues. Our approach has been to work cooperatively with Labor when we can, and to respectfully disagree when we can’t.
The consequences of these three initiatives, if approved, are contrary to the interests not just of taxpayers but to the interests of Labor’s own members since they are anti-business, job-killers.
If approved, these initiatives would hurt the City and our local economy – already under stress from the national recession.
They would contribute to higher unemployment, shut-down critical infrastructure improvements from road repair to anti-pollution projects, and hamstring redevelopment efforts.
Their first initiative seeks to apply the California Public Records Act to private businesses contracting with the city. The consequence of its passage would be to effectively discourage small businesses from bidding for City contracts. The larger corporations that might still submit bids are likely to increase their bid proposals to cover the anticipated cost of responding to PRA requests. Not to mention that fewer bids generally means higher prices. In summary, this measure would undoubtedly increase contract costs for the City, further exacerbating the budget deficit.
Their second initiative would amend a proposition which has yet to be implemented. Seems they have the cart before the horse. Since its approval in 2006, the voters have been impatiently waiting to see savings result from the Managed Competition process. Rumor is that the Managed Competition Guide will come before the Council in the near future. What no one besides the Council and Labor know at this point is whether the Guide will be effective or whether it will effectively neuter the primary objective of Prop C. The City should prioritize its efforts on adopting the voter mandate, as originally intended by Prop C rather than wasting $250,000 on a ballot measure which is premature.
The third initiative would effectively discourage private development and job growth within the redevelopment areas of the city by requiring a public vote on each project. This type of ballot box development is poor public policy and contrary to representative government. It would put San Diego at a competitive disadvantage with other cities at a time when the City should be identifying incentives for economic development. The measure would discourage small to mid-sized developers from doing business with the City of San Diego because of election costs. And finally, the provision in the measure for an independent expert report would also increase costs to the City.
In sum, these three measures would waste invaluable taxpayer dollars, delay economic recovery, create disadvantages for the City of San Diego as a place to do business and exacerbate the City’s financial problems. We don’t need this type of ill-conceived public policy in the City of San Diego. Please vote “NO” on all three measures.