Over the weekend, a voter asked me where do the firefighters and police officers that work for the city of San Bernardino reside? I inquired why she wanted to know and she stated that she had heard they did not live in the city and wanted to know before she voted.
I shared with her what I am now sharing in this article with you. According to the latest human resource’s report I obtained, only four out of 120 firefighters live in the city and only 18 of the 240 police officers live in the city. Now I am sure these numbers have declined due to the current bankruptcy which has not allowed the mayor and council to hire new personnel while other public safety employees have left.
I also shared with her my opinion to beware of those candidates who are supported by the police officers and firefighters associations because in the past those elected by these groups do not have the best interest of the taxpaying public and voters of San Bernardino in mind. I place emphasis on San Bernardino because other public safety associations in other cities have behaved in a more responsible manner when it comes to cost constraints on their public budget.
Then she wanted to know who has been endorsed or supported in the past. I did not know all but shared a few names that came to mind at the time: Wendy McCammack, Jim Penman, Chas Kelley, Anthony Jones, and in this election cycle John Valdivia, Henry Nickel and Bessine Littlefield Richard.
The public safety associations’ hope is to take over the council with at least four elected officials who will do their bidding to control the voters even though they do not live in the city and pay taxes here. She did not care about the salaries but was concerned about where they lived. This was a very good point because every current council member and candidate stresses people being attracted to and living in the city. How can that happen when the employees who are paid to promote and protect the city by their actions say it is not good enough for them to live and raise their families?
So voters do what this voter is doing. Get the facts before you cast your vote. Fill out your voting ballot and return it to the voter’s office before or on November 3. It is very important that you vote.