The topic of bumping takes center stage at Tuesday’s City Council meeting, the first of 2013. An audit focusing on the last 10 years of city staff reductions—a report former District 10 Councilmember Nancy Pyle was dying to discuss but will instead be heard by new kid on the block Johnny Khamis—has some less than stellar findings.
Here’s a nutshell of how much has been stripped from city services, according to the audit:
“Over the past decade, the City of San Jose has cut 28 percent of budgeted positions. The City has eliminated budgeted positions over the last ten years mainly by eliminating positions as they became vacant. This either shifts the workload to remaining employees or causes managers to scale back work. In addition to laying-off 337 people over the last ten years (all but 6 were laid off in the last three years), 2,444 fulltime employees retired and 1,507 fulltime employees resigned. The City’s annual turnover rate, which historically had been between 5 to 8 percent, spiked to 14 percent in 2011—a year in which the City cut more than 600 budgeted positions.”
Below are other key items on the City Council Agenda for January 8, 2013:
— This next report could be bad news or good news, depending on how much a person monetizes their self-worth. In a report of city services and accomplishments, there is a breakdown of how much money is spent on individual San Jose residents from a departmental perspective:
• $299 for Police
• $234 for Citywide, General Fund Capital, Transfers, and Reserves
• $198 for Environmental Services
• $159 for Fire
• $ 77 for Public Works
• $ 69 for Transportation
• $ 59 for Airport
• $ 53 for Parks, Recreation and Neighborhood Services
• $38 Finance, Retirement, Information Technology, and Human Resources
• $35 for Mayor, City Council, and Council Appointees
• $35 for Convention Facilities and Economic Development
• $29 Planning, Building, and Code Enforcement
• $28 for Library
• $ 8 for Housing
— There’s a police chief search underway, and the council needs to sign off on a SJPD policy statement as well as some interview questions for candidates. The two most provocative requests/queries:
No. 5 Please describe your approach to working in a unionized environment, including non-sworn as well as sworn personnel.
No. 17 How would you deal with a recommendation that, in your professional judgment should be made, but which you know may be unpopular with the Mayor and City Council?
— The council could sign off on a 10-year, $1.25 million lease agreement with Whispers Café and Creperie, which would be located at 150 S. First St.
— The city could sell property to Launchpad Development Nine, LLC for a Rocketship charter school at Tamien Park. The sale already has Mayor Chuck Reed and Vice Mayoir Madison Nguyen’s blessing.
— Could a pilot program for Curb Cafés’, which is a fancy way of describing tables and chairs placed out front of a restaurant or coffee shop, rescue San Jose’s downtown?
— City Manager Debra Figone is taking a trip to Las Vegas on Jan. 24-26 to take part in the Large Cities Executive Forum. Ballin’.
— Noble Dog Park Community meetings could receive some funding if recognized as city-sponsored special events. District 4 Councilmember Kansen Chu is leading the charge.
— And one item worth keeping an eye on at next week’s meeting is the sale of several city properties from the stable of properties under the watch of the Successor Agency to the city’s deceased RDA. Included in the list of properties to be sold is 193 E. Santa Clara Street, which Symphony Development wants “for a purchase price in the amount of $4,250,000.”