Santa Paula Council Spends Sales Taxes
Santa Paula City Council Spends Sales Tax on Up to 23.8% Pay Increases
October 17, 2017 by VCTA Executive Board
Residents of Santa Paula, you were duped. Abandoning any semblance of sound fiscal planning, Santa Paula City Council caved to pressure from public unions and approved outrageous salary increases for a majority of its employees, costing more than the city expects to raise in revenue from the voter approved 1% sales tax increase.
While council voted 4-1 to spend all the Measure T Sales taxes on pay increases for employees, the only opposition to speak before the council was members of the Ventura County Taxpayers Association.
Not one dime was earmarked for city services. Nothing was directed to help generate new sources of tax revenue to replace the spending of these sales tax dollars back into the city. Any thought of attracting tourism revenue was non-existent. Investment into retention of existing businesses in the community, to keep jobs in Santa Paula, was totally ignored.
These outrageous pay increases are a reminder to residents of Santa Paula of the power public labor the unions have over some elected officials. Public labor negotiations are held in secret, behind closed doors with representatives of labor and management. The only people not at the table are the taxpayers who are asked to foot the bill.
The shortsightedness of the majority of City Council members was amplified by their reasoning that when the sales tax measure expires, they will just pass another new tax. The shortsightedness exhibited by city council in this and other decisions, could well be the tipping point that leads to insolvency for the wonderful City of Santa Paula.
In our system of government, voters get the government they deserve. The council voted 4 to 1 to spend this money – reason enough to vote a new city council at the next opportunity.