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- Sporting Ammunition in a Fire is Safe for Firefighters if it is NOT Loaded in the Chamber of a Firearm
- State Ballot Measures – Letter to The Beach Reporter by Michael D. Robbins
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- Eye-Popping El Segundo 2009 City Employee Compensation Data Now Available | Public Safety Project on Eye-Popping El Segundo 2009 Firefighter Compensation Data
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Category Archives: El Segundo
Please vote “yes” on Proposition 32 (bans direct union and corporate contributions to candidates) and “no” on Propositions 30 (income and sales tax hike), 34 (repeals death penalty), 36 (three-strikes dilution), 38 (income tax hike), and 40 (gerrymandered redistricting plan).
Proposition 32 helps prevent El Segundo and other South Bay and California cities from being pushed toward bankruptcy by city employee unions and corporations that buy influence with politicians who then pay them back with our tax money and raise our taxes and fees to pay for it. Typical payoffs are one million tax dollars for every thousand donated.
Corrupt and wildly overpaid firefighter and police unions are spending millions of dollars in deceptive campaign ads to defeat Proposition 32. These unions have been bankrupting our cities and jacking up our taxes and fees, so they can get total compensation of $150,000 to more than $300,000 per year, and retire at age 50 or 55, with a guaranteed pension paying up to 90 percent of their single highest year salary. … Continue reading
El Segundo like many other cities in California appears to have some of the symptoms of an affliction now common throughout California. It has been observed in Vallejo, San Jose, San Diego, San Bernardino County and Stockton. I will refer to this malady as the “Stockton Syndrome”. Some of its symptoms include the lack of a balanced budget, loss of revenue from sales and real-estate taxes, investment income and electric utility tax. Other symptoms include unexpected personnel costs. Annual budges that must also cope with ever increasing yearly growth in salaries, pension and medical costs is common. Moody’s has taken notice of this in their recent announcement to review the bond ratings of all California cities. … Continue reading
“New and Improved” Kinecta Federal Credit Union ATM Machine Crashes and Strands Customer
by Michael D. Robbins
Director, Public Safety Project
August 27, 2012 at 6:34 PM PT
What do you do when the automated teller machine (ATM) you are using crashes and hangs up on you, freezing your personal banking account information on the display, and holding on to your ATM card? This is exactly what happened to the user of a Kinecta Federal Credit Union ATM machine located at 1970 E. Imperial Highway in El Segundo, California on Sunday, August 26, 2012 at 8:16 p.m.
She completed her first transaction, printing an account balance, without any problems. But when she tried to perform a second transaction, the ATM locked up on her and the keypad became non-responsive. No matter which buttons she pressed, the ATM machine would not clear her personal banking information from the screen, and it would not release her ATM card. Bummer!
A look inside the card slot with a flashlight revealed no visible evidence of the ATM card. It was transported somewhere inside the ATM, probably for security purposes.
This raised multiple concerns. If she left the machine, could someone else later have access to her accounts, withdraw cash from each account, and get her ATM card?
The adjacent Kinecta ATM machine had an even stranger situation. … Continue reading
Advice to the Hermosa Beach City Council for fire/police union contract negotiations to avoid bankruptcy:
Start negotiating from a blank sheet of paper to eliminate decades of union lawyer tricks and traps that ratcheted up costs.
Read, analyze, understand and price every provision and phrase in existing and new union contracts. Negotiate a not-to-exceed total contract cost based on specified staffing/service levels. Don’t write blank checks with taxpayer money as pension and insurance costs increase.
Do not base compensation on formulas involving compensation in other cities or costs will spiral upward. Do not give up inherent management rights to determine staffing levels, work assignments and layoffs, which are the city’s most important cost-control and bargaining tools.
Include a burden-sharing mechanism that includes thresholds and triggers which automatically reduce total contract costs by specified amounts, and optionally reopen negotiations, when unbudgeted, uncontrolled expenses and revenue declines exceed specified thresholds. … Continue reading
The following letter to the editor was submitted to the El Segundo Herald newspaper on Thursday, July 12, 2012 well before their 12:00 noon Thursday deadline, and it meets their 250-word limit including the title.
However, El Segundo Herald CEO and President Heidi Maerker arbitrarily rejected this letter without explanation. Maerker has arbitrarily rejected other letters without explanation since the April 10, 2012 city election, including letters that had nothing to do with the election.
There are a number of very interesting possible explanations for this strange behavior, which will be discussed in a future post.
Visit the Public Safety Project web site frequently for important information updates you will not get from the El Segundo Herald or other news sources.
Scott Houston’s letter (7/5/12, “Foxes Guarding Henhouse?”) was full of falsehoods, just like his city council campaign.
Houston wrote, “Since when is the Mayor executing agreements on behalf of our City? I thought that was the job of the City Manager.” As a two-time city council candidate (and loser), Houston should know the city council votes to approve ordinances, resolutions, contracts, and agreements, and the mayor signs them.
Houston wrote, “Where is the outrage that was expressed when our previous City Manager was acting as chief negotiator with the employee labor groups last year? … no one paying attention to what’s going on at City Hall. I guess the foxes are guarding the henhouse.”
Had Houston been paying attention, he would know Mike Robbins submitted a written Public Communication for the 5/1/12 council meeting citing SIX reasons why the city manager should not be negotiating city employee union contracts. It has been posted on the city web site (elsegundo.org) since 4/30/12, under agendas. … Continue reading
Thank You to the 90 Percent of Voters who Voted Against El Segundo Measure P, the Firefighter Union’s Initiative
by Michael D. Robbins Director, Public Safety Project May 18, 2012 Thank you to the 90 percent of El Segundo voters who voted against Measure P, the firefighter union’s initiative, and to those who campaigned against it. I campaigned against … Continue reading
by Michael D. Robbins Former El Segundo City Councilman Director, Public Safety Project May 17, 2012 Super CPR Saturday in El Segundo is May 19, 2012. This annual tradition of providing “free” cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) training to city residents was … Continue reading
I am delighted that Carl Jacobson has been reelected to serve our community and has been selected by four of our five city council members to be our mayor. Only Marie Fellhauer voted “No.”
Carl has selflessly served our community with integrity and distinction for many years, giving much time out of his life for altruistic reasons. He has the experience and motivation, and now enough support on the council with Suzanne Fuentes and David Atkinson, to help get our city back on the right track.
I am also delighted that ninety percent of the voters rejected Measure P, and instead voted to keep our local fire department and paramedic ambulances.
Mike Robbins led an informative and persistent campaign against Measure P since mid-2010. It took much of his time and effort to educate and motivate our community on this important issue, and our city’s future will be better as a result of his efforts.
I am grateful that our community has good citizens who give so much of themselves and expect so little in return. I am also grateful for those in our community who cared and supported them and their efforts. … Continue reading
Vents about Public Employee Unions
I would like to congratulate the citizens of El Segundo on their stinging electoral rebuke to the public employee unions. To vote Carl Jacobson back in with the most votes after the vicious attack perpetrated upon him and then for the Council to elect him mayor speaks volumes. The shellacking that Measure P took is indicative of the mood that many shared, that the lies the Fire Department pollsters told in their early push poll were irrelevant, only local control mattered.
I saw Marie Fellhauer’s first act was supporting Bill Fisher for Mayor and Mayor Pro Tem. This reminded me of Don Brann’s support for Eric Busch because it was “his turn” to be Mayor. She’ll be a one termer too. While I appreciate that Marie and Don have given up their time to serve, the mindset a public employee brings to the Council is inconsistent with fiscal responsibility and their natural tendency is to represent public employee unions instead of the citizens.
I hope that the public employee unions have learned their lesson. You can’t shake down your neighbors for excessive pay and benefits in a down economy. The money simply isn’t there. I also hope they will listen to Dave Atkinson on pension reform ideas because the same sad fate may befall them as many private sector union members. When their companies went bankrupt, they got only a fraction of their pension … Continue reading
Progressives Don’t Like Facts
Meredith, an admitted progressive, made an attack against Robbins in your April 19 issue. It was typical progressive diatribe, in which he used personal attacks with no basis in facts. But then it’s difficult to argue against factual evidence showing progressives in YouTube videos demonstrating their true beliefs.
He goes too far in his suggestion that those he disagrees with indulge in cannibalism. Is he really saying that the majority of voters in El Segundo would “eat our young” here? Based on his letter, he’s the one who really needs professional help.
Fortunately, the voters were intelligent enough to have rejected Meredith’s beliefs. Since he doesn’t like El Segundo’s choices, I would invite him to leave and settle in a more “progressive” city such as San Francisco, West Hollywood, or Santa Monica, which would be more to his liking. … Continue reading