Oct 30 2012

OPINION: Talking Past Each Other

Resident urges discussion of financial issues, not “punishment” –

Regardless of the outcome of the Measure Y vote, the City Council faces significant financial challenges that it and its campaign surrogates have refused to discuss during this campaign.

The Yes campaign has relentlessly colored a No vote as an attempt to punish the Council for past sins.

I urge voters to look past this glib response, and to consider the hard facts about Piedmont’s financial past and future.

Millions have been spent on undergrounding, the Blair Park “gift”, and exploding employee benefits. Despite feeble mea culpas from Council and senior Staff, nothing has changed. Not one management policy has even been implemented to ensure past engineering debacles don’t happen again.

When asked about Piedmont’s $40 million unfunded pension liability, Mayor Chiang’s response is “Rest assured we are focused on working towards that solution”.  At least the Mayor acknowledges the problem, but is he serious that we should have faith in his Council to act given recent failures?

It’s time for the Council to tackle Piedmont’s financial challenges head-on and seriously consider recommendations of the Municipal Tax Review Committee and Budget Advisory Committee. Up to now these committee’s reports are gathering dust deep in the bowels of City Hall.

Until then the Council should not be granted more public funds to waste. Please vote No on Measure Y

Ryan Gilbert, Piedmont Resident

Editors’ Note:  The opinions expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of the Piedmont Civic Association.  The Piedmont Civic Association does not support or oppose candidates or ballot measures.

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