Is Ed Shikada doing a great work as Palo Alto mayor? In a shut session Monday evening, March 20, council participants satisfied behind shut doors to assess the work efficiency of the mayor and also city lawyer: A Yearly Testimonial.
I desire I had actually been a fly on the wall surface at that conference. As a matter of fact, I figuratively desire all the citizens that desire were flies on that particular wall surface. It’s our cash that spends for the massive incomes these 2 (and also various other workers) are getting, which are enhancing yearly.
If I needed to assess Shikada’s efficiency, there are some adjustments I would certainly recommend, which are the outcome of my enjoying several board conferences and also checking out the regional papers daily.
My very first worry is those high incomes this city pays its workers that cost us virtually $200 million a year, consisting of advantages, for greater than concerning 900 full time and also 300 part-time workers.
The board lately granted a 4% boost in all base pay in July 2023 and also one more 4% in 2024. In addition, each worker will certainly obtain $100 monthly in adaptable payment. And also 3rd, the city will certainly bring all supervisor incomes to the marketplace degree, as figured out by a study of various other cities. These brand-new rises will certainly set you back $8.6 million over 2 years.
That’s a huge quantity of cash for a city of concerning 68,000 individuals. Shikada obtained $573,000 in 2021. I do not have his 2022-2023 degree, yet it remains to increase; Additionally in 2 various years he rated 6th and after that 4th in this state for highest possible mayor incomes and also The golden state has a number of cities a lot bigger than Palo Alto. Shikada additionally has 12 aides that report to him to assist with his tasks. And also couple of, if any type of, workers in various other cities obtain every various other Friday (26 times off a year), plus 13 paid vacations with a brand-new drifting vacation simply included this year. Incidentally, the city simply offered squadron police officers a 20% pay raising.
2nd, I would certainly ask Shikada why it takes as long to obtain points carried out in this city. Citizens and also designers have actually long questioned why allowing and also authorizations in this area take months, usually a year or 2 to obtain authorized with substantial connected charges. No clear response yet unaoorival still takes a long period of time.
An associated inquiry is why some jobs currently authorized by the council never ever appear to emerge? My preferred instance is those electronic indications at the entryways to our public garages that inform vehicle drivers the number of jobs are presently offered and also at what degree.
When then-board participant Liz Kniss tipped down from her seat in 2020, she asked Shikada when the electronic lights would certainly be finished, as the board had actually authorized them a number of years previously. We’re working with it, she responded. Well, 3 years have actually passed and also the job is not yet completed. I’m no website traffic designer, yet if I desired an electronic automobile counting system for a city garage, I would certainly call a firm that might manage the work and also it would certainly be done! I understand San Jose 15 years earlier had every garage in the city outfitted with electronic lights suggesting voids.
The exact same hold-up problem relates to the traffic jam problem along Embarcadero Roadway near El Camino, the traffic signal at the college going across is not collaborated with the traffic signal at the Community & Nation entryway a block away, so vehicle drivers are usually quit two times awaiting the lights to alter. At the ECR-Embarcadero crossway, the left turn lane on ECR typically has a lengthy line up usually needing motorists to wait 2 or 3 cycles to ultimately transform onto Embarcadero. The trouble: Website traffic on the Embarcadero is obstructed as a result of both unskillful signals.
The back-up began right after Investor Joes opened up in T&C in 2008. I have actually created a number of columns on this problem beginning 13 years earlier. They will.
Incorrect. It’s 2023 and also it’s still an aggravating and also recurring trouble.
Following, I would certainly recommend that the Mayor, that establishes the council schedule, with aid sometimes from the Mayor, not place schedule products that truly matter to the general public in the direction of completion of the schedule of the board. The timing is such that conversation of a crucial subject usually does not start till around 10pm, whereby time council participants are tiring and also several citizens have actually currently gone house. Possibly the supervisor desires it in this way. A conversation on cops security, a warm subject for the area, showed up late on the schedule. The following day I asked a board participant why he elected no when I assumed he favored getting rid of security. He claimed that already he was so exhausted that he could not focus.
The council argument on Fiber in your home, a substantial $144 million task, was authorized in the last couple of hrs after a number of citizens left the council chambers. This is a significant city expenditure that required a lot more public input and also assistance than held true that evening. Fiber permits a much faster internet link to citizens that select to be linked to it, for a regular monthly cost. It’s additionally a solution currently offered from Comcast and also AT&T, that have much more sophisticated expertise concerning fiber than individuals the mayor will certainly require to work with.
Considering That 1983 we have had an inner mayor, among 4 authorities selected by the council. Yet a number of years ago it was determined to work with an outdoors Chicago company, Baker Tilly United States, for this bookkeeping solution. Currently is the moment to reassess.
Why? 2 factors. Previous auditors were enabled to wander the workplaces inside Town hall and also chat with workers. Usually, a previous auditor old me, that’s just how an auditor learns that points obtain a little out of hand.
Today Shikada, in addition to the board, is supplying the Chicago company with a listing of products it intends to evaluate. It looks ok yet it’s not. If a supervisor does not intend to divulge a trouble, and also make it openly well-known, that trouble could quickly (purposely?) be ended the listing. And also therefore, the supervisor can conceal points even more quickly. I’m not stating it’s occurring, yet maintaining a concern a trick would certainly sure be very easy.
And also ultimately, what concerning all the cash this city is investing, although it has a yearly budget plan of virtually $1 BILLION. Possibly that discusses a few of the high investing, like the $144 million for fiber, or perhaps $400,000 for a play room with dinosaur statuaries.
Monday’s agreement schedule consisted of restoring agreement room at LAZ Car parking for $2.3 million to a two-year agreement for their employees and also ticket motorists that park in household license locations without the unique sticker label. Yes, the city will certainly accumulate the cash from ticket owners, yet investing such a large amount on such a little issue appears inefficient to claim the least.
Oh well, they’re simply investing our cash. Why should we care?
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