From the San Bernadino Sun:
“A decade ago, the city’s finances seemed more than stable, bolstered by the Inland Empire’s surging housing market.
“The economy boomed in the early 2000s because that was an economy based on home building and construction,” Morris said.
“Unfortunately, he said, city leaders did not handle the money wisely.
“The City Council during that time – heavily influenced by labor as they always have been here – did not work and maintain a reserve for a rainy day,” he said. “We began the century by literally giving overly generous contracts to our public employees.”
“And for Morris, that is a key factor in the past and a major challenge in the future.
“It’s part of this labor city being remarkably generous with our city labor groups and our City Council largely being elected by that same set of unions,” he said. “We are blue collar to the core and union to the core.”
“In a city where the median household income is $39,895, more than 200 Police Department employees make more than $100,000 a year, and more than 100 Fire Department employees also earn more than $100,000 a year, according to state data from 2010.
“When the housing market collapsed and construction jobs disappeared, unemployment spiked and tax revenue plummeted.”
Yet I still get e-mails from union members (and their emo wives) huffing that they’ve been betrayed.
On the other hand, here’s a San Berdoo factor Stockton does not share: corruption.