So I have to wonder what the future holds for OneSD and the City of San Diego. Currently the program is being rolled out city wide; bills take forever to get paid (if at all) and the next roll out is to take on payroll. If you have not heard, Tom Flemming, the head of SDDPC has resigned and the owners of the program being used by OneSD have sued the City and SDDPC for breach of contract. The company Axon, has demanded the software and supporting documentation be returned and has asked for an injunction preventing the City from continuing to use the program. In a suit filed in US District Court, Axon is seeking $5.6 million for breach of contract.
I wrote about this debacle a while back in a post titled, "OneSD Joke is on YOU" where I talked about the cost over runs and the management of this program. The initial project coordinator, Rick Reynolds was fired and filed a law suit claiming wrongful termination. This entire program has been a joke from the beginning and with every turn more problems than a college calculus math book. There is no end in sight for the incompetence in leadership when it comes to the City of San Diego.
Is it any wonder the city is facing a deficit of between $179 and $200 million? There was another article in the Voice of San Diego talking about the proposed cut of 800 "vacant" positions within the city. The article, titled "Emptying the Notebook: City Vacancies" talks about the many "provisional employees" and the fact they are not on the books and do not show up anywhere. Just another example of the City cooking the books and playing games all the while cutting positions. Why do people come back to do this for less money than they were making when working? They do it because in most cases they were not prepared to leave when they did; need additional money because their retirement is NOT what all the pundits and naysayers put out; or they just are not ready to let go. The problem is a full time employee faces layoff because the city can show the layoff, save the benefit costs (including retirement costs), pay less salary and get the job done, thus giving the appearance to the taxpayer all is well and they see and feel no adverse affect.
There is virtually no way of tracking these positions and how many there are city wide. There are even those who are "volunteering" their services out of miss placed loyalty and a feeling of dedication to the public to make sure the job they once did is still being done. Police officers are violating their training every day answering calls alone when they should not; cutting corners when completing investigations; talking victims out of reporting crimes and not taking the time to arrest misdemeanor criminals or issuing traffic citations to remain clear for priority calls. There is virtually no pro-active police work being done today due to a lack of experience and adequate staffing. Responding to radio calls for service is the norm today and not much else. The telephone report unit takes at times two to three days or more to call victims back to take a report. In many instances the victims decline to follow through due to the delay in call back and or do not call back when asked to do so. Is it any wonder crime shows down?
There is word out that the city's financial condition is improving due to an uptick in the Stock Market. Officers are being promised there will be no cuts to wages or personnel. To all those who believe this poppycock I have some land I need to sell. I can show you the land any evening where the moon is hidden and the tide is low. It's a great piece of waterfront property where you could easily build a retirement home for not a lot of money.
Anyone saying there will be no further cuts to wages and benefits is either smoking wacky tabacky or has lost touch with the reality of life in San Diego. The stock market surge will have little if any affect on the budget for next year. The failure of housing prices to rebound; sales tax revenue is still at an all time low; the state is raising income tax by 10% further reducing spendable income; and revenue is still lagging behind projections; all of this means things are about as bad as they can be. The deficit is on the low side $179 million and on the high side over $200 million. The projections are for the deficits to be at or over $100 million for the next 5-7 years. The only way to cut these deficits is to reduce expenses and increase revenue. The mayor has steadfastly refused to discuss increases to revenue by way of increased fees or taxes. That leaves his idiocy of simply cutting. My projection is he will be gone before people realize what a joke he and his policies were and how much damage he truly has done.
The city continues to spend as if there is no problem. The city council told the mayor they were not going to reduce their office staff or spending. In an article in Sunday's Union Tribune, "Council ignoring mayor on cutbacks" Ben Hueso is quoted as saying, "The current structure reflects essential staff. Any reduction of personnel would make it nearly impossible to conduct effective committee ad council meetings." So if I understand Mr. Hueso correctly the city council believes they are operating with minimum staffing right now. Can someone get a call to these people on the city council and share with them the REAL numbers of police officers and clue them in the police department is and have been operating with WELL BELOW MINIMUM STAFFING for some time now? Let them know we need help; no matter what they have been told; we are in dire need of help and someone is going to get seriously hurt or killed if they do not do something NOW!