Firefighters Union President: City Plays Politics with Department Response Times

The city recently acknowledged that it was missing thousands of emergency response times when calculating how long it takes first responders from the San Jose Fire Department to arrive on scene. Robert Sapien, president of San Jose’s firefighters union, explains in an op-ed why emergency response times matter not only in life and death situations, but also when calculating the city’s budget.—Editor


Prioritizing Future City Spending

At the upcoming Aug. 7 City Council meeting, the discussion will focus on how to prioritize city spending IF revenues increase. So, in the example below, if revenues increase by $10 million—either by revenue growth or tax increase—this is how I think it should be spent by percentage.


Measure B Goes to Court Again

The legal battle everyone expected over Measure B’s passage began Wednesday, as the city filed for a federal judicial review (a.k.a. “declatory relief”) and attorneys representing police and firefighters unions filed two lawsuits in state court. All of this will take months, if not years, to resolve, so we’ll focus on some of the more interesting commentary surrounding the legal battle.


Negotiations Delay Emergency Declaration

Tuesday’s City Council meeting will feature a status report on the city’s general fund, but no action will be taken in regards to declaring a “fiscal and service level emergency.” Consideration of that item has been deferred until after Oct. 31.


San Jose Firefighters Make Concessions

UPDATED WITH CORRECTION: Firefighters Union Local 230 and the city are on the verge of reaching an agreement that would reduce the deficit and possibly even get back some jobs. The most radical concession involves the introduction of a two-tiered retirement plan, and distinguishes between employees hired before and after the agreement is signed. It will be the first such plan for public employees in the entire country.