Watchdog: City made right decision not to spend funds from state, should treat Local One workers right

Watchdog-LogoBy Barbara Zivica

Despite what you may have heard, the state did not give the City of Antioch an unexpected $793,767 windfall. It’s repayment of a debt.

Remember Prop 1A (2004)? It was intended to protect revenues collected by local governments (cities, counties, and special districts) from being transferred to the state for statewide use. It required the state to start reimbursing local governments for mandate claims.

This money is the anticipated reimbursement from the State for mandate claims filed by the city in 2004. The city is also due about $188,000 for interest earned on the money.

The council, of course, could hardly wait to express their ideas for spending the money although any logical person, Mayor Pro Tem Lori Ogorchock being one, would instinctively know that the money should go into the General Fund reserve. That way it could be set aside pending the outcome of the lawsuit against the State Dept. of Finance over redevelopment money used for the marina. Should the city be successful on the marina issue, the money should go toward OPEB (other post employment benefits).

What the city should not do is what Mayor Wade Harper suggested – invest the money in solar energy.

That might be on the city’s list of future desired projects but this money should not be used for that purpose.

Note: The council also discussed a complaint by members of Public Employees Union, Local 1 over disparate treatment by the city, e.g. lack of parity on health care contributions by the city, staffing shortages and lack of meaningful bargaining process. (Local 1 is currently working without a contract).

This is shameful. Local 1 should be treated exactly the same as all other city employees.

3 Comments to “Watchdog: City made right decision not to spend funds from state, should treat Local One workers right”

  1. Arne says:

    Sadly, no one at that council meeting mentioned that the State has suspended 56 mandates for this fiscal year, which means if the city goes ahead and performs those mandate (which they will) it will have to be paid out of the General Fund!!

    Amongst those 56 suspended mandates (which means the stat will not be reimbursing the city) is the Hayden Bill which requires animals to be kept for 7 days beyond what state law requires; and The Brown Act which includes posting of public notices, publishing the agenda, and a host of other Brown Act requirements.

  2. Mary Chapman says:

    I am so glad we have a true “Watchdog” looking out for our best interest in Antioch. All of us should be actively involved in the Council Meetings and support the citizens trying to “clean-up Antioch”!

  3. Reginald Jamal Brown says:

    Nothing is going to happen until the right people get their pockets lined.

    Hint. If you need to know who all you have to do is watch a Council meeting.

Leave a Reply