Given that so many governmental agencies are significantly burdened by pension obligations, both debt payments and current costs, which decrease their ability to provide services, when does government go beyond simply asking for tax increases, which is a short term fix, (see measure Z), and bring forth and implement serious pension reform?
Many local governments across the state have pension debt to CalPERS, including Eureka. Some of this is due to poor budgeting, some is leftover from the crash in 2008, and some of the problem is that we keep passing temporary measures to fund public safety (like Measure Z.)
Eureka needs to pass Measure H! Not only is it one of the only ways our City can profit directly from the ever flowing interstate which runs through our town like a fertile river, but the fact that the tax has no expiration date means we might be able to actually PLAN for the future. Stop gap fixes are always more expensive in the long run, and as many working families learn the hard way, borrowing for your basic needs is a dangerously slippery slope. Measure H will provide some financial stability for our vital public services. The need for public safety agencies doesn’t expire, why should their funding source?
On top of financial stability and efficiency, using the revenue from Measure H to pay down our CalPERS debt will save the City millions of dollars.
I believe when the City provides a job, it should be a good job. In many cases that means providing a pension. With a solid economic base, and thoughtful budgeting, Eureka can set an example of best employment practices for the community.