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Saturday, February 16 , 2019, 1:54 pm | Fair 60º


Letter to the Editor: Squandering the ‘Good Ole’ Days’ in Santa Barbara

This is sent in response to Henry Schulte's article, "The Good Ol' Days in Santa Barbara."

Congratulations, Henry — another dead-on article in Noozhawk. Great job!

Amazingly, the first thing that public entities look to for additional revenue is either cutting services to the people for which they exist or tapping their pockets by raising fees and/or attempting to increase taxes. Seldom if ever do public entities consider the very first thing that is looked to in private industry when additional revenue is needed to "stay afloat," which is: How can we maintain our current level of services without raising the cost of our product to our customers?

We, of course, answer that question in private industry by working harder, working longer and working more efficiently — concepts completely foreign and lost upon most of those who serve the public where the answer to every problem is more revenue.

The reason public entities react in the manner they do is self-preservation. Sadly, they no longer exist to serve the public. Rather, their first priority is job security, preservation of pay scales and protection of benefits — benefits we in private industry could never possibly afford for ourselves. Once the foregoing are fully funded, that which remains is then dispersed for the intended purpose and is generally woefully deficient.

Of course, one of the more popular battle cries from the politicians is: "What can we do? We are tied to union contracts." Who were the geniuses who agreed to the union contracts? Why is it that the same task performed by a public entity is performed in private industry with far less manpower and at a more affordable cost?

And the politicians sit dumbfounded unable to grasp why the citizens would ever consider Proposition "M."

James H. Smith
Santa Barbara

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