Stop cities from stealing our cops
Re “Sacramento considers bonuses to keep police staff from leaving” (Page 3A, March 21): Giving bonuses to workers in the hopes that they won’t leave for neighboring cities is madness. After spending the bonuses, some workers will continue to seek another job.
Cities in other states have implemented more effective ways to retain experienced workers, such as assuming a worker’s unfunded pension liability when he or she transfers from another city using the same multi-employer pension fund like CalPERS. Not only will this be a costly disincentive for cities to steal cops from one another, Sacramento taxpayers won’t have to keep paying for a cop’s unfunded pension liability after he or she has left.
Marcia Louise Fritz,
It’s not bad to take the law literally
Re “Partisan split is evident as Gorsuch hearings begin” (Page 1A, March 21): Democrats are concerned that Judge Neil Gorsuch follows a “cold and literal reading of the law.” What they want is a warm and fuzzy distortion of clear language in order to reach a preferred result. Doing that is to decide what you think the law ought to be, rather than what it is.
Making a decision that doesn’t necessarily lead to the result you would prefer is the mark of a good judge. What Democrats want is a judiciary that acts as a super legislature, believing that the U.S. Constitution is a mere suggestion.
Paul H. Greisen,
Consumers lose in water rate dispute
Re “The Public Eye: Water agency with top pay to raise rates again” (1B, March 19): First, the state of California requires the water districts to reduce water use during the drought. We consumers comply under threat of fines. As a result, the water districts receive less revenue and now need more money to operate because of the loss of income.
Now the water districts feel compelled to raise rates because we followed the state requirements to reduce water use. Where is the compensation for consumers who followed the state’s mandates? We are getting charged more for complying with the state’s rules. This sounds like another state-driven rip-off to me.
Willis Mohr, Citrus Heights
High employee pay isn’t the real story
Re “The Public Eye: Water agency with top pay to raise rates again” (1B, March 19): It’s an over-simplification to suggest the salaries of San Juan Water District employees are just too high. Because it must treat raw water from Folsom Lake, the district has more engineers and water treatment personnel on staff than other districts do. A more technical workforce translates into higher average wages.
But much of the water-rate increase is for deferred and future capital-improvement projects. Frankly, I would rather pay the increase today than wait for some catastrophic event of bursting water pipes and then have to pay for emergency repairs, which are always more costly.
Kevin Knauss, Granite Bay
Is football really to blame for ALS?
Re “Another sobering reminder of price NFL players pay” (Page 1C, Mar. 21): The author has jumped to the conclusion that playing football in the NFL led Dwight Clark to be diagnosed with ALS. However, Clark only “suspects” the disease may be linked to football. Professional football has undoubtedly caused brain damage in a number of players, but most people who contract ALS have never played the sport.
Wes Hill, Carmichael
Weed might thrive on vegetable farms
Re “Will California farms find enough workers?” (Page 1A, March 19): I know a small-scale vegetable farmer who, through decades of dedication, has raised his family on land near Watsonville. His superior vegetables are served at expensive restaurants in San Francisco.
Out of necessity, he hired most of his help from among seasonal workers from south of the California border. He respected them, paid and treated them fairly, so that many of them came back year after year. When he attempted to hire local citizens, most would not work for minimum wage. Or, even if they tried, they were unable or unwilling to do the hard work.
Now that the supply of workers from Mexico is drying up, many neighboring farmers are selling their land to be used for a crop with better profits – marijuana. The corporations running those businesses won’t have any problem finding help. There is more money in marijuana than in vegetables.
Mary Ann Gieszelmann,
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