Friday, January 30, 2015
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Wasteful government officials

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By
From page A8 | January 27, 2013 |

As a citizen of Fairfield, I wish to praise columnist Kelvin Wade for his Jan. 17 column, “All-expenses-paid secret knowledge hunters,” concerning the unnecessary attendance of the mayors of Fairfield and Suisun City and a Suisun City councilman at a California Association of Sanitation Agencies conference.

It was held at a fancy resort and spa. Why?

If information about sanitation needs to be disseminated, have they ever heard of emailing or teleconferencing? I would like my mayor, Harry Price, to explain in the Daily Republic why it was so important for him to go to this fancy resort and what was it he learned at this conference that he could not have learned from an email or a teleconference.

Those methods would have cost the taxpayers a lot less or maybe zero money.

Is Fairfield going to send the mayor or a councilman to the next conference, which Kelvin Wade said is going to be held at the luxurious Mayflower Renaissance Hotel in Washington, D.C.?

A former co-worker of mine was on some oversight board in the Bay Area. He told me about a luncheon the board had at a fancy restaurant at taxpayer expense. When I challenged him on why it was necessary to have their meeting at a fancy restaurant, he told me it was just a perk of being on that board. He felt no guilt about wasting the taxpayers’ money. Is that the attitude of Mayor Price? Is he going to say these are the types of benefits he gets for being elected mayor? Probably not. He will more likely come up with some gobbledygook about why it was necessary for him to suffer through three days of staying at a luxurious resort on the taxpayers tab.

Charles McLaughlin

Fairfield

Letter to the Editor

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Discussion | 6 comments

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  • G-ManJanuary 25, 2013 - 2:07 pm

    Rare is the "leader" today who treats the public purse as anything but their personal ATM machine (All Taxes are Mine)...We don't have leaders we have politicians..inept,wastrels..PR conscience..stand up hacks..It would be good to remember that not one of our founding fathers was a politician..

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  • Mama BearJanuary 25, 2013 - 2:14 pm

    @My little Teddy Bear.....Very good. I agree.

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  • Rick WoodJanuary 26, 2013 - 10:24 am

    Why all the rhetorical questions, Charles? If you have an opinion, state it! There is another side to this issue (correct of course!), and if the DR chooses to print my letter, submitted a couple of days ago, you can read it there, or in the comments to Kelvin's column. I WANT my elected representatives to go to such conferences under guidelines they adopt and make public, which is required by law.

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  • MikeJanuary 27, 2013 - 9:09 am

    "Mayor Harry Price: Compensation package of $22,382 includes $7,201 stipend, $3,600 automobile allowance, $26 life insurance premium and $11,555 health, dental and vision insurance." Obviously Mayor Price is making a very lucarative living being mayor of Fairfield. Wow...a salary of $29,500 with an additional $3,600 for car expenses.

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  • G-ManJanuary 27, 2013 - 10:23 am

    Ironically the Mayor probably wouldn't be able to afford the Hotel w/o taxpayers paying for it...It's all a game isn't it?..Those conferences could be held at any number of places@ less expense to Fairfield..I loved the comment..paraphrased..We hold them @ nice locations so people will come????...Well if that's the incentive where's the dedication to duty that these people assumed when they achieved election or appointment.?

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  • Rick WoodJanuary 27, 2013 - 10:36 pm

    No, Mike, not a salary of $29,500. I'll take your figures as correct. The "stipend" might be considered a salary; all the rest is benefits, just like a lot of employees get. The total compensation package is $22,382 NOT $29,500 plus $3,600. You need to work on your math. I don't know how many hours the mayor puts in, but it's a lot. He's active. Let's say he works only quarter time of 10 hours per week. That's 520 hours per year, or a whopping $14/hour of stipend, or $43/hour total compensation. And the more hours he gives to the City, the lower his hourly rate. Now go off and get the same data for a firefighter or a police officer or any other salaried position with the City you like. How about a clerk/typist? Compare hourly rates based on salary and total compensation with 2,080 hours being full-time (actually it's less if you take out paid absences like vacation, holidays, and sick leave; the mayor doesn't get those because he's paid for part-time work). You'll be in for a surprise.

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