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Opinion: Thoughts on sorting out city’s finance mess

Melanie White

La Jolla resident

I want to make sure all my fellow Village residents have seen Carl DeMaio’s publication called “Roadmap to Recovery,” which balances the city budget without cuts to police and fire services. Carl DeMaio is the City Councilmember for District 5, which includes Rancho Bernardo and Scripps Ranch.

There has been a lot of nonsense written about how difficult it is to solve the city’s financial mess without cutting firefighters and police jobs. Following the voters resounding rejection of Proposition D, here is one of the council members coming out with a lot of very sensible and thoroughly thought through ideas about how to solve the city’s finances without cutting any critical jobs.

We all know the city’s pension situation is a mess, and it is going to just keep escalating if something is not done. Mr. DeMaio’s budget proposal includes simple measures to solve the pension situation such as cutting back on the “special pays” under which City employees get their pension entitlements not just on their base salaries but on all sorts of “add-ons.” His proposals seem to me to strike a good balance under which city employees are asked to make some very modest compromises in the way their very generous pensions and post-retirement healthcare benefits are calculated, in exchange for which the city can avoid the cuts which proponents of Proposition D threatened us with.

I would encourage everyone to take a look at Mr. DeMaio’s website

www.cleanupcityhall.com

and then to write to our Councilmember Sherri Lightner at

SherriLightner@SanDiego.gov

and ask her to support his proposals. Our city council has the power to solve this budget mess, and our councilmember should be right in the middle of it.