October 25, 2010
CONTACT: Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, APR
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San Diego City Council Goes on Legislative Break with Minimal Reforms Completed
Savings to date represent one half of one percent of the $510M tax increase
(San Diego) – Voters being asked to decide whether to impose a half-cent sales tax increase now have results to help them judge whether city leaders will be able to keep promises to enact meaningful budget reforms.
Mayor Jerry Sanders and San Diego City Councilmembers in favor of a half-cent sales tax initiative assured San Diego voters they would enact “significant reforms” prior to the November 2 election to demonstrate to voters their intentions to carry out the provisions necessary to solve the City of San Diego’s ongoing budget problems.
The Council has now gone on recess and will not meet again before the election, so all pre-election reforms are complete. The results? In a word, predictable.
The total amount of savings achieved prior to the November 2 election totals $506,000. This represents the following:
- Partial Reform of Politicians’ Pensions and Offsets for Unclassified Employees and Elected Officials and end of terminal leave program: $506,000 (by FY 2012)
- Passed Flawed Managed Competition Guide: $0
- Issued Landfill RFQ: $0
This figure represents a mere .50 percent of the half-billion dollar sales tax increase that would be paid by San Diego taxpayers to the City of San Diego if Proposition D were approved.
“These results are no surprise. Prop D is D for Disappointment,” said T.J. Zane, chairman of San Diegans Against Government Waste. “We have a token amount of savings achieved before voters go to the polls. In the meantime, the sales tax will cost city taxpayers $510 million over five years. This is hardly a cost savings measure by anyone’s standards. Prop D will COST taxpayers big time, not save taxpayers money!
“Actions – or non-actions – speak louder than words. The failure to accomplish any substantial reform and savings is a demonstration to taxpayers that our city leaders are not committed to real reform. It’s time for a reality check and a little tough love from voters. A no vote on Prop D is the only way to force meaningful reform to the City of San Diego’s budget.”
“The savings achieved to date by the City Council are disappointing to say the least,” said Lani Lutar, President & CEO of the San Diego County Taxpayers Association. “Our expectations were modest given the creative crafting of the so-called “reform” provisions, but opportunities for meaningful reform were left on the table.”
“As just one example, the City Council was not willing to fully eliminate taxpayer subsidies for their own pension benefits. Prop D proponent Councilmember Frye was right when she recently stated: “We just can’t seem to follow a basic process and keep our word.”
For more information, visit www.stopthesalestax.com or look for "San Diegans Against the Sales Tax Increase" on Facebook.