|He's OK, but ...|
It was a very commendable thing for Bill to do. I suspect that he has been under considerable pressure from the far less worthy people who replaced him at the Chamber of Commerce to endorse Noah, and his refusal to succumb to what must have been a blizzard of phone calls deserves recognition. Listening to that must have taken some real stamina.
And let's face it, under its current so-called volunteer leadership of Susan Henderson, Carol Canterbury and Nancy Walsh, the Chamber of Commerce has not exactly been a blessing for our beleaguered downtown business community. The consequences caused by the absence of capable professional leadership there become more obvious every day.
All of that said, however, I can't let this one go by without comment. It is just that mind-bending. The following is the payoff paragraph from Bill Coburn's News.net entry on why you should vote yes on Measure UUT:
We vote people onto our City Council to represent our best interests. The current Council, which has far more awareness of City programs, budgets and services than the general populace, has taken the position that the UUT should be extended, 4 members to 1. One of those four Council members, John Capoccia, who opposed the 2012 UUT extension because it was going to automatically increase the rate to 12%, which he opposed, has written an extremely well researched series of articles, as I mentioned earlier ... And since we elect the Council members to represent our best interests, maybe we should listen to them when they suggest to us what it is that is in our best interests.
Really? Nancy Walsh knows more about city business than you do? Josh Moran, because he is on this City Council, has a deeper understanding of the city's budgetary complexities than any of this city's many highly informed citizens? John Capoccia, the guy who has never met a side of the UUT debate he wouldn't support, has a better appreciation of the issues? John Harabedian, the county machine pol whose pliable backbone turns to india rubber every time he is presented with a city employee union demand, should be unquestioningly trusted on a utility tax hike?
Good Lord. Can you imagine the low sense of self-esteem you would need to have to accept the notion that these people know more than you do? About anything? And that you should just take their word on a 25% utility tax increase because they hang around City Hall for a few hours every couple of weeks?
Here are 10 proven reasons why Bill Coburn is wrong about this City Council, and that you would have to be remarkably naive to blindly take their word on maxi-taxing ballot initiative Measure UUT.
1) Water rates increased twice. Twice because they couldn't get the math right the first time. $10s of thousands of dollars were needlessly paid to a second consultant to fix the mess caused by the first one.
2) The highest utility tax rates in California were put on the ballot twice, failed once, and could very well fail for a second time. Residents are told various tall tales by the city about their double-digit utility tax rates. Almost none of which are true, and accordingly are disbelieved by thousands.
3) Many downtown stores closed, and those storefronts remain empty today. This despite $30,000 in taxpayer money being spent on something called a "Market Demand Study."
4) Our Moody's water bond ratings dropped three times, despite over 100% in combined water rate increases. A problem the water rate hikes were supposed to correct, or so residents were told by this City Council. Currently our water bonds are rated "junk."
5) Our water ran out. SGVMWD replacement water, which the city is paying near ransom rates for, turns several different rainbow colors and kills pet fish.
6) Health plan costs for select city employees rose to the most expensive levels in the entire state of California. This while residents were being told that costs at City Hall have been cut to the bone.
7) The Tree Commission was killed off for no good purpose. What was left got folded into something called an EENER. The insulting reason given for this being it would save city staff time.
8) The EENER Commission, after months of meaningless politically correct posturing over just how "green" and "sustainable" it is, goes on life support after Chairperson Paul Alva suddenly quits. No move is made to replace him. Somehow the city survives.
9) Out of the three people elected to the City Council in 2010, none remain. Joe Mosca resigns for reasons never fully explained and leaves the country. Nancy Walsh and Josh Moran decide not to run for reelection rather than face questions about all of the above.
10) When the City needed leadership and guidance during the Bob Matheson/Kiddy Porn Affair, this City Council did nothing. Instead they quickly shifted all responsibility over to the SMPD, who then also did nothing. Two Councilmembers denied ever having known Matheson. Photos soon emerged showing that they were not telling the truth.
Given the abysmal performance of this City Council, should you passively accept their opinions about Measure UUT and vote Yes?
All because they happen to be warming the seats at the time?