Letters to the Editor

Letters: Minimum wage, disabled parking, school funding

A disabled parking placard is displayed in a car window parked on J Street in downtown Sacramento in 2012. Drivers have been complaining for years that every other downtown parking spot seems to be taken by a car with a blue disabled placard on the rearview mirror. Now, city officials in Sacramento, San Francisco, Los Angeles and other cities have joined the chorus, saying the placard perk is clogging downtowns, harming businesses, cutting into city revenues and making it harder for truly disabled people to park near their destinations.
A disabled parking placard is displayed in a car window parked on J Street in downtown Sacramento in 2012. Drivers have been complaining for years that every other downtown parking spot seems to be taken by a car with a blue disabled placard on the rearview mirror. Now, city officials in Sacramento, San Francisco, Los Angeles and other cities have joined the chorus, saying the placard perk is clogging downtowns, harming businesses, cutting into city revenues and making it harder for truly disabled people to park near their destinations. Sacramento Bee file

Business owners need baseline

Re “Deal struck to raise California minimum wage to $15” (Page 1A, March 27): When I started college in 1961, my part-time jobs were at the minimum wage of $1.25 per hour. The Bureau of Labor’s CPI calculator shows that the 2016 equivalent would be $9.91, indicating that $10 is pretty close. $15 in six years would be an increase of 7 percent per year, too much.

As an employer I would like a base minimum to give me a baseline for entry level jobs, but overdoing the rate will distort that entry level value. I’d like to find a base line, like 1961, and follow the CPI for levels now and automatically adjusting each year as government pensions and Social Security do.

Les Corbin, Fair Oaks

Same old squeeze play for poor

Looks like the politicians are going to screw the working poor again. The proposed deal between the unions and the state to finally raise the minimum wage sounds good at first. That is until you read the fine print.

The catch is that the governor can stop the automatic annual increases for inflation “during a recession.” I guarantee you that when things get good again there is no provision for the poor to catch the wage back up again by raising the wage a little above inflation until it is back to par.

A simple fix would be for the politicians to do the right thing and write in a formula to catch the minimum wage back up after temporarily halting inflationary increases. Good luck on that ever happening.

David Gimbel, San Diego

Stop parking placard abuse

Re “Will disabled placard abuse undermine Sacramento city parking plan?” (Local, March 24): The handicapped placard program needs fixing. I bet that for every one person that truly is handicapped and needs to park close to their appointments due to mobility issues, there are 100 others that are simply abusing the system.

I’m unclear why parking meters are free and come with unlimited time for someone displaying a handicap placard in the first place. That provision in and of itself fuels abuse for those who are inclined to take advantage of the system.

The Legislature, county and the DMV should tighten up the requirements to get and renew placards, and then nail abusers who are taking up parking spaces.

Jim, Fair Oaks

Public school funding still lags

Re “Big waves pounding on California schools” (Insight, March 25): It was disturbing to read in Dan Walters’ column “that a 56 percent increase in K-12 school funding over the last five years, up $23 billion per year – has not solved all problems.”

It would be fairer to say that level of funding gets most schools back to their 2007-08 spending. While money alone won’t solve all of the problems in education, California still ranks last in students/teacher, counselors/students and librarian/students.

In my district, we have spent millions of dollars training teachers in Common Core curriculum, no longer teaching to the test, but teaching our students critical-thinking and problem-solving skills. We are in transition, but I’m confident that our schools can succeed and teach our students skills they require for their futures. Even so, we are substantially underfunding our schools relative to less wealthy states that are excelling in education.

Paige Stauss, Roseville Joint Union HSD board president

Settle this silly spat at 10 paces

Re “Ted Cruz blasts tabloid’s ‘garbage’ report of affairs” (Page 9A, March 26): Just when I thought I’d seen it all in a presidential election we now have accusations of extramarital affairs in the National Enquirer. I suppose it was inevitable. The only way they and the Republican Party can save any honor is for Donny and Teddy to fight a duel.

It should be sponsored and officiated by the National Rifle Association. Let the world see how real American men resolve their differences.

Greg Aaron, Sacramento

Why not go full-blown Nazi?

Sen. Ted Cruz’s anti-terrorist strategy would have this country start patrolling Muslim American neighborhoods. Perhaps he could outfit his patrols with “brown shirts” and then have these bully boys conduct their own version of “Crystal Night.”

A.D. Dopson, Elk Grove

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