(Parks, not PERKS.... Nature walks, not TAX HIKES!)
So What Is Measure CC?
Measure CC is the East Bay Regional Park District's outrageous 15-year bait-and-switch scheme for relieving EBRPD of certain obligations that naturally belong in the District's general fund. The dollars thereby "freed up" would then be available for another round of salary and benefit increases for an already grossly overpaid full-time EBRPD staff of over 500 individuals who already average over $100,000 annually in salary and benefits!
And EBRPD considers Measure CC just an "an excise tax on the privilege of using... property for residential purposes...." Bet you thought that was a right, not a privilege!
CC is EBRPD's third attempt at an unneeded money grab since 1998.
Newsflash, March 1, 2002:
The Alameda Newspaper Group (including the
|Allied with ACCT in attempting to defeat Measure CC is an organization of long-time EBRPD supporters and local conservationists -- a group that includes EBRPD's retired Personnel Director. Go to the Friends of Parks site, www.friendsofparks.com|
EBRPD GROWTH IN SALARIES AND BENEFITS VS. POPULATION AND INFLATION, 1987-2004
("Y" axis represents multipliers of 1987 base-year values. See data summary in table below)
Inflation: Up 73% since 1987
Measure CC is an outrageous assault on taxpayers. Had EBRPD salary and benefit growth been
short: EBRPD salaries and benefits have grown much faster
than the compounded rate of population x inflation. Had District
compensation been limited to such natural escalators, EBRPD would
now have $18 Million
more available per year for park maintenance and other purposes.
|Park repairs and maintenance are paid from the same EBRPD General Fund that provides salaries and benefits. Since 1987, EBRPD's "Repairs and Maintenance" budget, never allocated sufficient funds, has increased from $1.07 Million to $2.93 Million (174%). The District's budget for salaries and benefits, meanwhile, has exploded upward from $19.84 Million to $62.15 Million (213%) !! Such massive irresponsibility on the part of the tax promoters should NOT be rewarded with new sacrifices by already overburdened taxpayers. See the graph and table above for fuller perspective.|
that it couldn't pass
artificially designated the
Parks note that "Only
EBRPD's Use of Public Funds to Support Measure CC
We find that EBRPD is once again using public funds to promote this latest tax scheme.
The district's "Measure CC Facts" brochure, for example, enumerates alleged benefits of the measure, with no mention of drawbacks, or the incredibly plush state of existing EBRPD finances. The district plans to distribute its next issue of Regional in Nature just 13 days prior to the November 2 election. That issue will likely promote Measure CC at taxpayer expense, without fair representation -- or any representation -- of opponents' arguments.
The League of Women Voters, a private entity which
receives $7,000 annually from EBRPD
The "desired effects" included findings of high levels of "support for the proposed tax measure among voters" who've seen one of the three "communication outlets." Reliable district attorneys, enforcing laws against public funding of tax campaigns, would prosecute agencies that ignore such laws. As one of our members reminded EBRPD in a letter dated November 26, 2001:
As expected, the District denied any wrongdoing. EBRPD, for a multitude of reasons, deserves a resounding "NO" vote on Measure CC.
Measure CC's "Sunset Clause"
"Sunset clause"? As Will Rodgers is reported to have said, there is nothing so permanent in all the world as a "temporary tax." Bay Bridge tolls, originally 25¢, were supposed to end in 1956. Today, they're still there, holding up hurried commuters and charging us $3.00 besides -- with even that amount likely to increase again soon. The tax promoters will take as much as you let them take. Will you now resist?
LET'S REQUIRE RESPONSIBLE, ECONOMICAL USE OF EXISTING EBRPD FUNDS — NOT INFLATED EMPLOYEE COSTS, MORE BUREAUCRACY, AND NEW TAX INCREASES.
With a $184,434 general manager’s annual salary (exceeding California’s $175,000 limit for governors), six "assistant general managers" making $138,466 to $167,586, and even "administrative assistants" paid $86,632, it’s all-aboard on the gravy train for EBRPD.
"ENVIRONMENTAL MAINTENANCE" AND "PUBLIC SAFETY" -- THEIR POLL-TESTED DODGES FOR PEDDLING NEW TAXES -- CONCEAL THE FACT THAT eEBRPD ALREADY COLLECTS $34.77 IN TAXES ANNUALLY PER PERSON IN TWO COUNTIES (PLUS RAPIDLY INCREASING USER FEES).
UNABLE TO PASS ITS TAX SCHEME IN DISTRICT-WIDE
ELECTIONS, EBRPD HAS GERRYMANDERED THIS ELECTION -- APPARENTLY
Alliance of Contra Costa Taxpayers
Citizens for Responsible Government
East Bay Libertarian Party
Save El Sobrante
Waste Watchers, Inc.
TO ARGUMENT IN FAVOR OF MEASURE CC
INFORMED ENVIRONMENTALISTS AND TAXPAYER ADVOCATES AGREE: MEASURE CC IS A 15-YEAR BAD DEAL FOR EAST BAY HOMEOWNERS AND RENTERS -- AND OUR PARKS.
EBRPD doesn’t need more money. Instead, the District needs to restore its original environmental vision and purpose: to "preserve, restore, and protect" our parklands.
A VOTE AGAINST MEASURE CC IS
NOT A VOTE AGAINST PARKS. We
signers are environmentalists who work hard protecting our parklands. We
want a financially and environmentally healthy Park District. Regrettably,
we have no confidence that current
PLEASE VOTE NO ON MEASURE CC!
For more information:
Harlan Kessel —
Former EBRPD Director (17 years); Board Member, Regional Parks
Alan La Pointe — Chairman, Friends of Wildcat Canyon; Co-Chair, Friends of Parks; Board Member, Regional Parks Association, Richmond
Karen Weber — Former Personnel Director, EBRPD (1977-1996); Member, Friends of Parks, Oakland
Paul Merrick — Chairman, Dunsmuir Ridge Alliance; Co-Chair, Friends of Parks, Oakland
Friends of Parks — Greg Schneider, Co-Chair
This page was last updated on 10/05/04