Staying below the radar as far as we can tell, the city of Eureka added an “addendum” to the 2014/2015 budget. When did this happen? No one can seem to figure it out from the agenda’s since the June 24th adoption of the city budget. But whatever the case, there were some winners in this year’s City budget, and some losers. The losers are mainly….you, the citizens of Eureka!
In this budget, there are positions added. The Zoo gets a new attendant at $52,000 a year. The City Attorney gets a “Deputy City Attorney” with no mention of the cost.(she really needs the help, seeing that she’s completely incompetent) Obviously the Council has their priorities, one of which is the Zoo. However, they also told us that they want to prioritize Public Safety. What are they doing to make sure Police and Fire are the number one priority? Cut and freeze positions!!!!
That’s right, in the Police Department has a Captain, Lieutenant, and 2 Police Officer positions frozen. On top of that, the Project Manager position was eliminated!!! In the Fire Department, two Fire Battalion Chiefs were demoted to Fire Captains. That’s on top of 2 Fire Fighter positions being frozen. The kicker is that 1 Fire Fighter position was eliminated!!!
Of course, on paper it looks like the City Council has beefed up the Police Department by adding two positions. In reality, they actually cut positions by putting a “freeze” on hiring. Dave Tyson’s legacy stretches through the ages in city hall it seems. Never fill the allotted ranks in Public Safety, and use those budget savings to fund your favorite pet projects like the Zoo. Oh well, the 10% of the registered voters in Eureka that voted for the Measure O extension probably like those types of allocations. After all, you don’t hear about shootings or stabbings on Lunbar Hills, right?