Cut the Raises – Letter to the El Segundo Herald by Mike Robbins

The following letter to the editor was published in the El Segundo Herald newspaper ( on Thursday, August 13, 2015 in the Letters section on page 3. The El Segundo Herald has a strict 250-word limit, including the title.

Cut the Raises

The El Segundo Total Compensation Survey on the City website shows the police and firefighters are substantially over-compensated when compared to ten other South Bay and nearby survey cities.

The police and firefighter unions changed their campaign slogan to “We don’t want raises. We just want to stop the cuts.” But they already got their raises – many huge raises during the Great Recession – that are budget-busters. And they are talking about only one out of many annual and periodic raises hidden in their union contracts, including raises on top of raises.

There are no new police or firefighter staffing cuts as they want us to believe. The City Council is funding three additional police positions. And if the firefighters got their way, we would have fewer firefighters per shift. They put Measure P on the 4/10/2012 ballot to maximize their compensation, but reduce staffing to only 12 firefighters and no paramedic transport ambulances per shift.

The firefighters lied to the voters, saying that signing their initiative petition would preserve our local fire department, when it would have disbanded it, forced El Segundo to contract with Los Angeles County for an inferior level of service, and transferred the firefighters to the County. The fire union lobbied the City Council (2/15/11 meeting) to enact Measure P directly into law without letting us vote on it. When we finally got to vote, 90.1% voted “No”, even though the firefighters probably spent over $100,000 on their campaign.

We cannot trust them.

– Mike Robbins

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