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December 5, 2019
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Question of the Week

Are you in favor of renewing the updated public safety sales tax—previously known as Measure G—set for the March 2020 election?

Yes: 24 | No: 47

Public comment:

Daniel Dodge Jr. Yes. We need to continue to support our police, firefighters, and parks…

Carl Vucinich in response to Dodge Jr. I do believe all the things you mentioned are included in the taxes you already pay. The problem is, the city government is frivolous with their money. And where are those tax dollars going to the police department? They are ranked as one of the worst cities in crime in the United States. The bottom 18 percent. Meanwhile, the chief and assistant chief are pulling down a half $1 million a year between them…

Dodge Jr. in response to Vucinich I feel safer in Watsonville than Santa Cruz or Salinas. WPD has hired many local officers, upgraded their equipment, and invested in programs designed to stop juveniles from being repeat offenders.

Vucinich in response to Dodge Jr. I will agree that it’s safer than Salinas on the whole. Santa Cruz by the flats is sketchy. But the numbers don’t lie. They are in the bottom 18 percent of the United States. I commend the programs that they are looking at implementing, and those that have already been implemented. The hiring of police officers is very important. And so is their pay period but when the chief of police is making 260,000 a year, and the assistant chief is making 230,000 a year, and let’s not forget about their pension that is ongoing, I don’t think that’s very financially responsible. Now if there were some results, like there weren’t over 50 reps in Watsonville last year, which that was… Then maybe they would be worth that. There’s over 40 Watsonville city employees making $200,000 a year. I have looked at many towns the same size and they don’t have that kind of a budget. And back to my other question, don’t the citizens already pay taxes to cover these things? Thank you for your input Daniel, keep up the good fight.

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To participate in the Question of the Week and see all the responses, visit The Pajaronian’s Facebook page.

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