With tongue in cheek, I sit here wondering about the possibilities. What IF; the mayor acted with integrity and pulled the "Last, Best and Final" offer for a contract from the SDPOA and went back to the bargaining table? What IF; the mayor sat down at that table with an open mind and a willingness to listen without judgment to suggestions for cuts? What IF; the mayor stopped thinking "Politics" was saying what he thinks people want to hear and told the truth? What IF; the mayor stood tall and told the truth about DROP and employee benefits? What IF; the mayor actually put the public's safety as the number one priority in the City of San Diego? What IF; the mayor stopped the rhetoric and provided the realities of the public's safety after the exodus of 200 employees of the Police Department? What IF; the mayor presented a realistic budget to the public that included the necessary increases to fees and taxes to pay for the service provided? What IF; the mayor sat at the dais and actively participated in EVERY City Council meeting, showing the taxpayer he is the leader of this great City? What IF; the mayor hired Assistant Chief Javier Mainar as the new Chief of the San Diego Fire Department; saving thousands of taxpayer dollars and building morale for a department that is losing over 10% of its most experienced and dedicated of employees? What IF; you chose the next one……
I could go on with; "What IF" for hours. There is so much that is wrong with the mayor and his response to the problems of this city. I keep hoping against all hope he will slip in the shower and bump his head and have a change of attitude or see the light or get a clue or wake up or stop the nonsense or anything that would allow him to see what he has done is not working and only making things worse. I refuse to believe inner circle confidants are steering him in the direction he is taking the City. When Rear Admiral Ronne Froman left the mayor's office it was the first glimpse of trouble on the 11th Floor of City Hall. The exit of Fred Sainz offered a glimmer of hope. Then the hiring of Gerry Braun and his "Ass-Kicks of Virtue" brought back indications he was in need of a new spin doctor to help navigate the press. It has not gotten any better, when last week he hired James Waring of the Sunroads debacle.
The mayor toots his own horn as he boasts "transforming organizations so that they become more effective and efficient" over the course of his 30 year career. There is not a leader alive who does it all themselves. Their successes were and are a direct result of the work and support of those below him. I said in my "VVM" post, the mayor has lost the trust, faith and support, of the workers in the City of San Diego. While the mayor may have surrounded himself with people he believes will best help him carry out his agenda; it is apparent those same people are the ones giving him advise that is destroying this once great City. The transformation taking place in the City of San Diego is NOT for the better, nor what taxpayer's want or bargained for. The mayor, in his quest to provide a more efficient workforce, has cut over 700 positions and forced an additional 350 to retire before they were prepared, to preserve benefits unnecessarily reduced or cut. This will in short order have a negative effect on the effectiveness of ALL City Departments from Water, Street, and Parks; to Police and Fire.
If I were able to sit and talk openly with the mayor, I would tell him it is not too late to change course. I would tell him to pull back the imposed contracts of Local 127 and the SDPOA and sit down at the table with them. I would tell him to open his mind and listen to their ideas for cuts and changes to their contracts. I would tell him to trust them and believe they do understand what the economy has done and what needs to be done to stay afloat. I would tell the mayor to leave his ego at home and think outside of the box of ordinary collective bargaining and work toward "YES." I would tell the mayor there is no downside to telling the truth. To do anything less is cowardly and what is wrong with politics. I would tell the mayor he has no time to waste and if there is any hope of keeping this City together and safe from ruin he must stop the destructive course he has set and immediately change course and begin to build the trust necessary to work together and make positive changes for the good of EVERYONE who lives, works, or visits San Diego.
What IF the mayor actually did any this???