Police, City Finally Come to Terms

After a week of tension as members of the San Jose Police Officers Association voted to accept or decline cuts in pay, benefits, sick leave and retirement, and in effect save the jobs of 156 officers, San Jose cops agreed to concessions by a 674-429 vote, POA Vice President Jim Unland said. The City Council unanimously approved the terms of the agreement on Tuesday.

The POA agreed, with 61 percent of membership in favor, to give up 10 percent in pay and benefits for one year and give up control of airport security to the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s office, while a no-layoff clause goes into effect for one year, Unland said. The compensation cut will also last for one year while the city and union continue to work on retirement and sick leave payout reform.

No future meetings for negotiations are currently scheduled, Unland said. The POA is the last of the city’s 11 unions to come to terms in labor negotiations.

While there was relief amongst union officials that jobs will be saved, the city’s $115 million budget shortfall will still require police officers to be laid off for the first time in the city’s history.

“I think it’s realistically around 100 (officers) right now,” Unland said. “They’re going to get laid off unless the City Council finds some one-time money to save those jobs. Our total is going to go down to about 1,100 for our workforce.”

One week remains until the council is expected to pass a budget for the 2011-12 fiscal year.

Click Here to Read the Terms of the Agreement Between the City and Police Officers Association.

Josh Koehn is a former managing editor for San Jose Inside and Metro Silicon Valley.


  1. Good job Mayor Reed…..your Legacy is set…..1st mayor in the history of San Jose to layoff/fire 100 police officers….I’m so proud of you and your accomplishments….The Oakland A’s are also thankful for turning San Jose into Oakland to make them feel right at home when they move here wink

    • To the young officer “krokus” who wasted good posting space, there are some good people in Oakland. Many intelligent and successful scholars have come out of that city. It is frightening to think a person with a skewed thought process as yourself was allowed to patrol a parking lot let alone a city.

      Now, on to more pressing business. Your negotiators fell for the tier 1 and tier 2 tactic. The oldest ruse in the book. Scare the crap out of everyone and then frighten them in to taking a pay cut by threatening massive layoffs. The City will come out of this smelling like roses when they kind heartedly save those jobs and took your 10%.

      When will you amateurs learn? Police personnel should not negotiate with experts.

      Also understand. Before you elect union officials;

      1. Make sure they are well spoken.
      2. Are adored by the community and piers.
      3. Know how to listen and not talk.
      4. Have roots in San Jose.
      5. Conduct a background check (education, professional experience)

      • Oakland is a cesspool of crime.  Now, does that mean all of the citizens are crooks?  Not at all and I am sure that the majority of them are good law abiding folks.  Nevertheless, Oakland is nationally known as a crime-infested city.  That is the point of his post.  As for the rest of your comments, I couldn’t agree more.

        Reed and Figone had a goal.  Reduce the PD to 900 officers.  Their secondary goal was to reduce pay and benefits immediately.  Given the rise in crime and the amount of citizens finally waking up to the fact that fewer police officers equals higher crime, Reed and Figone have reduced their rhetoric a tad.  Nevertheless, their negotiating tactics have been brilliant.

        The POA membership was literally shitting their collective Underarmor shorts at the thought of watching hundreds of their comrades empty their lockers.  The beauty of Reed and Figone’s tactics is that they would have laid off 300 officers if they could get away with it. But, absent laying them all of en mass, the next best thing is to have the POA capitulate on nearly all fronts.  The approved contract give the city most of what they asked for and doesn’t preclude them from laying off anyway or coming back for more in one year.

        Sadly, even with some professional negotiators, the POA was playing with a losing hand.  The citizens were lapping up the Reed Kool-Aid like they were lost in the desert and the media was complicit in the scam.  Probably the only thing that might have worked, or at least been quite interesting to watch, would have been if the POA had simply called Reed and Figone’s bluff.  They could have just demanded arbitration and then dared the city to lay off the 300.  I think in the long run that might have been preferable.  It is like swimming at a Santa Cruz beach.  You either inch into the water bit by bit screaming all the way or you dive in and get it over with. Either way, you are going to suffer some pain until you go numb.

        • Interesting post if you live in lala land and don’t believe the facts of the structural budget deficit.  Where would you go to balance the budget and spare the rethoric about taking from the captial or special fund accounts.  The fact is there is not enough to funding for public safety with the current revenue streams.  So as a taxpayer I applaud the police officers for acepting the reduction to save positions and I wish them the best.

        • Provided somebody at the city had their priorities straight.  The city has money, they just don’t want to spend it on the necessary evil that is public safety.  I equate the city’s current attitude towards police and fire like a large corporation that has always bought two dollar pens for their employees.  Now with money being tight they want to stop buying those high quality pens and buy boxes of pens at 20 cents per pen.  But, they expect the 20 cent pens to work just as well as the two dollar pens.  It just doesn’t work that way, you do get what you pay for.  The private sector recognizes that some employees will be valued more than others in order to maintain a profitable business.  The city seems to think that all public employees come from the same mold.
          And, lest a city employee think that means cops or firefighters are better, that isn’t the message.  Each city employee demands a different set of skills and background.  Some skill sets and qualifications demand higher pay.

  2. A one-year reprieve for 156 (approx) officers and a complete bail out for Reed and Figone. Well done Jim. You also just helped several anti-police councilmen in their efforts to get re-elected. As well you helped put a band-aid on the problem instead of addressing the problem head on. Nice, balanced presentation of the issues as well, LOL. You have now completed your transformation from Sergeant to politician and apologist for the CSJ, thanks. Fortunately your term will come to an end and you will be defeated should you seek to serve again as VP. Happy Tuesday.

  3. Thank you Pete Constant for you could care less attitude and your “too little to late” statements before the council voted to lay off over 100 of your previous fellow bother and sister officers.  Of course while you continue to double dip by receiving your disability retirement check and well as a your city council check while dedicated officers are forced out of a job.

  4. Well, there is one thing that the SJPOA got from the city, though…

    “AGENCY FEE PROVISION:  Upon notice from the POA, the City agrees to implement an agency fee provision as soon as practical.”

    So it looks like the Union will have their money preserved, while the rank-and-file will have their money reduced. 

    Considering the size of the “no” vote on this ballot, that was probably wise, because I can see a decert movement down the road.

    • the Agency Fee provision is like a service charge for those who decide to opt out of the SJPOA. The POA is the only entity authorized to negotiate for police officers in both good times and bad. The fee will be nominal in comparisson to the full membership dues and will enusure that everyone who suffers with the negotiated contracts AND benifits from them when times are good share the expenses.

      Why/how would the POA be decertified? If the membership realy wanted arbitration or even a different contract they could have voted this one down. If they want different leadership then they can vote in a new president, vp and new board of directors.

      What would a decertification accomplish that the mentioned options wouldn’t? Why would the City want to push for a POA Decert? I mean heck, if the City truely believes that the POA just rolled over why dump them to have to negotiate with Bobby Lopez and the other 3 guys in the FOP?

  5. Why did the officers sign this?  The officers agreed with REED when they signed it.  They should have forced the city to fire everyone. I don’t think the council would have went with the Mayor.  How many murders shootings and stabbings since Friday night.  Unions are getting weaker and weaker in the city. I think San Jose is on a collision path and knows it.  I think the city will keep most of the officers in place come July first.  They will somehow discover the money.  Politicians do not want to be known as the onces who put public safety at risk

    • Any group that votes to give the shaft to themselves really deserve no sympathy. You never get anything back when times get better that you previously gave away. How can you have any respect for a group of people that vote to screw their brothers both current and future? You would think that cops would know this better than anyone. How often does a criminal that cops to a plea deal get to change his mind and get his life back later.

  6. Kro, Dr, X, why & Ret. excellent points. 

    If I may add: So much for awaking a sleeping giant.

    The next question is not “if” but “when” retirees are raped and plundered of their pensions will they roll over and wait to be tossed jobs hawking beer and hot dogs opening night at Reed stadium?

  7. Excuse me, but I am tired of the BS. I am tired of hearing the leadership of the San Jose Police Officers Association (SJPOA) cry and moan over the loss of officers (as President Beattie did at yesterdays city council meeting), when they didn’t fight for the Tier 1 officers during contract negotiations (the officers scheduled to laid off July 1). Did any of their contract proposals demand a “no layoff” clause for ALL officers? No, they sold out the Tier 1 officers long ago. Their hypocrisy knows no bounds, they are now crying crocodile tears for the Tier 1 officers and the rise in crime their layoffs will mean, while at the same time telling/encouraging officers to leave not only SJPD but also the profession of law enforcement.   
                                                Go to http://www.sjpoa.com/PDF/vanguard/june11vanguard.pdf and read the “words of wisdom” the president and vice-president are giving their membership.

    Mr. Beattie, you are SJPOA President, act like one. Don’t cower during negotiations, and then in print and private, talk tough (As long as the media/forum is friendly i.e. the POA’s Vanguard and the POA hall.) I don’t think past POA Presidents would have run scared at the thought of taking on the city in arbitration. Why does 99% of the POA’s media quotes/sound bites come from your VP, Mr. Unland? Mr. Beattie…if you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.

    Three days after the POA signed the tentative contract why did they have to run (and I mean run) back to the city and get two additional side letters for issues not covered by the original contract? The issues were: 1) keep the current pay scale for pay outs for the Tier 1 officers and 2) a no layoff clause for Tier 2 officers. Was it because POA leadership didn’t care about Tier 1 and 2 officers until the “tentative contract” saw the light of day and it became clear that without the two side letters the contract was going down in defeat (Tier 1 and 2 officers represent 250+ votes).

    Since the 2010-2011 contract was signed Beattie and Unland have been telling the Tier 1 officers that they were toast and they weren’t going to expand any energy on trying to save their jobs. They told them to look for jobs somewhere else (this was almost a year ago). And that isn’t the worst of their hypocrisy, starting last October the POA starting garnishing an extra $50.00 a month in POA dues (for political uses i.e. the billboard that broke new lows in political buffoonery) from every POA member, including the Tier 1 officers. I know the dues increase was voted in by majority of the general membership, but shame on you for taking money from officers you had already decided weren’t worth fighting for.

    Mr. Beattie, you talk like you care about your membership but, like most things in life, actions speak louder than words. Where did you get your moral code…that bastion of police ethics: New Your Police Department? Maybe if you spent less time smoking cigars and more time meeting with community/neighborhood groups/associations SJPD might have a more positive image with the public…AND the SJPOA might have some influence with city hall as opposed to being no more than an after thought in city politics.

    • @shame on you…..where is your chief?  Why isn’t your chief speaking out, instead of doing nothing??? Those officers were gone a year ago….the 156 that were saved will be gone next year…..what are you solutions????  Why don’t you run for a sjpoa executive spot or the board?

    • Wow!!!! How can I give a big thumbs up to this post? The author has absolutely hit the nail on the head and captured the sentiment of a huge number of police officers within the PD. Not only have George Beattie and Jim Unland sold out about ten percent of an already understaffed department, but squandered the overwhelming good will which the SJPOA had built with the community under prior leadership. Their words and actions have been absolutely shameful, and an embarrassment to many of us.

    • Do not forget Bobby Lopez is as disgruntled and worthless as Pete Constant.  He quit as POA President.  Changed his mind and wanted his job back using his own family as a weak reason.  Membership denied him so now he wants to under-mind his own association.  Very weak Bobby.

      • Sounds like everyone is trying to blame this Lopez character for the failure.  Like any union if people are upset changes are made.  From all the talk on this site seems quite a few members will not or are not happy.  Most union votes are much more sided with the Union. I have talked to several retired members of your department.  They feel a sell out is coming.  (Retired did you have a Union job?}  Ask your own alumni if they fear whats going on. No need to answer just hope the best for your membership

        • Hey Retarded, least you got your name right. Bobby Lopez is a back stabber just like Pete Constant.  When he didn’t get his wishes to be re-elected POA President he jumped ship.  30 years + retarded, saw a few bad POA presidents and Bobby was one.

    • No disagreement here. I wish I could play poker with Jim and George. Reed bluffed them all day long and is now sitting at his desk with his feet up and smoking a cigar in victory. I have no doubt he is laughing aloud at the POA leadership. Now, the other show will drop and he will thank the POA leadership by shoving a ballot measure where the sun does not shine. Thanks again Jim and George! Happy Thursday.

      • I’ve actually played poker with Unland in years gone by. He was always one of the first out of money. He doesn’t understand how to negotiate/gamble well. Now we are all paying for it.
        As for George, he is well intentioned but too emotional to be effective.
        Time for a regime change. Those two are sinking the ship. Time to toss ‘em overboard.

  8. Chuck “I Know Everything” Greed is an Idiot…  He seems to like to waste all of our tax dollars.

    Mayor Greed uses all of the City’s assets for his personal gain, he can care less about PD, Fire or anyone else.  You should see the “shady characters” come and go into his office, he’s glad handing them the entire time with promises of using City monies, as I hear the discussions coming from his office when I walk by.

    The Mailers that were sent out tell only the truth about what is happening within our city and to all of it’s employees.  The days of a congruent relationship between the City Admins and the “ACTUAL WORKING EMPLOYEES” are gone.

    Reed has bastardized the employees to the point of calling them a “CANCER”.  Who in the hell does this asshole think he is?  You folks think Wiener Gate is something?  I’m sure that I could dig up illicit activity on good old Chuckie.

    Every politician has dirt in his closet and I’m sure he has plenty to hide from all of the unions, employees, the citizens of San Jose.  Shame on all of you folks who think this guy is on the up and up about everything.

    San Jose Mayor and City Council are CORRUPT plain and simple.  Why “dilly-dally” around with all the Council Crap on who’s doing what, Reed still is screwing us all.  They are all CORRUPT.  I should know I am a very long time City Employee slated for layoff as of end of pay period Saturday June 25,2011 Thanks Mr. Greed you jack ass!

    • You sound pretty bitter and appear to be completely distorting the facts. First I find it odd you are a “very long time City employee” facing layoff as senority is usally the order of layoffs.  The vague statement about being able to dig up dirt also doesn’t hold water.  If you have facts present them, not just your vague threats that have no basis.  Just like the typical union rethoric, when you don’t have the facts to support your position, personnally attack the person.  You can keep thinking there is a boogie man in the closet, but the only thing changing is the accountablity of the union leadership and it is about time.  The Coucnil has been dealing in reality with the structural budget deficit, the unoin leaders are a couple years late in understanding it is real. As a taxpayer in San Jose I appreciate the vote fo the 61% and I wish them the best as they deal with these difficult money decisions us citizens have been strugling with over the last couple years.

    • Major League Baseball – San Jose can not afford you and voters will never approve you.  Stop the madness and just say no so we can move on!!!!!!!!!!

  9. Corruption Leak @ City Hall

    IT is easy to say City Hall is corrupt abnd anonymously accuse Reed of being corrupt but where is your written proof and hard facts ?

    We sort of know what you are saying could be true.

    Maybe like the $6 million that went McEnery maybe yes, maybe no, or maybe just politics with losers making false accusations

    Waiting written proof and hard facts or can’t really believe you

    Your turn

    • I don’t have written proof or any dirt but the HARD FACTS are there.  Actually they’ve been posted time and time again.  Opinions may vary I guess. 

      •  When Mayor Reed needed campaign contributions to fund Measure V and W who gave thousands of dollars to his cause?  Construction and real estate companies!* Why? Measure V and W doesn’t directly effect them.  Because they know that Reed has the money to shell out millions for low income housing projects which they directly benefit from. 

      •  Sunpower was another contributor to his this campaign.  They ended up getting $500,000 in RDA money for that nice gesture.

      •  McEnery got $6Million for the San Pedro Market deal and he turned around and hired his buddy Swenson.

      •  Reed transferred all Stadium land into a “trust” of sorts to protect it from the State.  (Smart but it tells me he wants that stadium really bad.)

      •  There is also the “John Doe” complaint from 2008.**  Good reading but I’m unsure if that went anywhere.

      •  As of 6/8/11 it looks like the City Manager has been authorized to sell the City owned Terraine Street property to McEnery (Urban Markets).***  For $521, 800

      * California Apartment Association, Core General Contractors, Greenwaste Recovery, South Bay Development Co., Hunter Storm LLC, Guinn Construction, South Bay Construction, Webcore, Arcadia Development, Trumark Companies, Bradenburg Staedler and Moore (Real Estate Investors), Shapell Homes.


      *** http://www.sanjoseca.gov/clerk/Agenda/20110621/20110621_0403res.pdf

  10. Like vultures descended upon a still-warm carcass at battle’s end, eager critics of the POA land here today to tear away at the flesh of a contract just signed, all the while squawking that the casualties were unnecessary.

    Sad and predictable.

    Despite my careful reading of today’s comments, as well as similar criticisms posted here previously, what I haven’t noticed is the presentation of a solution different from that offered by the POA in its recent contract vote. The members voting were presented with a choice: ratify the offer and accept a pay cut and a set number of potential layoffs, or decline the offer and put their immediate fate in the hands of the City and, at some future date, an arbitrator.

    The membership spoke—via the ballot box, and I don’t see how it’s possible to criticize the leadership for the deal without at the same time criticizing the majority of POA members who ratified it. By virtue of their vote they affirmed that, of the two miserable choices presented them, they thought it best to follow their leadership. They chose to accept the negative (pay cut) in exchange for the positive (the continued employment of their 2nd Tier coworkers), and in doing so they did as has been done at every contract time since the POA’s inception, they outvoted their fellow members.

    In other words, there was nothing unique about this vote; the fate of 1st Tier employees did not ride on it, and until the month’s end the fate of these fine men and women remains solely in the hands of the City (whose political leaders are no doubt having trouble ignoring the growing number of murdered people of color).

    The idea that the POA leadership, or that of Fire, MEF, or any other group had any chance of winning the image war is laughable—in its absurdity, and typical—in the sense that government employees have never understood the importance that timing plays in politics. The forces of the economic downturn, the housing crisis, and the high cost of living here combined to ready the political soil for the cultivation of public resentment; the emergence here of a two-faced mayor and a complicit, desperate newspaper guaranteed its successful harvest. The image war was lost before the first dollar was ever spent on a radio spot or billboard.

    While there can be no doubt that Chuck Reed and the leftist pukes at the Mercury have brought ruin to SJPD (showing zero respect for the good of the public), the damage to the POA has, sadly, come from within and cannot be blamed on the just concluded contract negotiations. No, the damage there began when an ambitious egotist—one in the pocket of the mayor’s fetch boy, refused to accept his defeat in his run for president. That was a first. Never before had any candidate refused to respect the results of an election, refused to respect the decision of the majority, refused to honor the traditions of an organization founded by his betters. The attacks posted here today against George Beattie and Jim Unland, allegedly representing a credible difference of opinion, are in fact nothing more than the latest racket from a prolonged, pathetic temper tantrum.

    • Do I smell a stalking horse for the POA? BS Monitor…more like, BS Spinner. Well spun BS but BS none the less. You say the POA membership had “two miserable choices presented to them”. This is true…they could 1) “Bend the knee” and accept the contract brought to them and endorsed by the leadership of the POA (Oh…they didn’t like it, but it was the best they could do under the circumstances) or 2) “Go to war” i.e. arbitration, with leaders who had already “bent the knee” (OMG…can’t go there…there is a wolf behind the door i.e. Measure V).

      Two miserable choices. And who is responsible for those miserable choices (and the steady decline of the POA)? Could the current POA leadership bear even a micro of responsibility? No way you say. According to you the culprit is every economic and political calamity in recent memory and a ghost from the POA’s past. Nice try. You spin well and could make a sow’s ear into a silk purse if no one was watching. You could probability get a fulltime job as an apologist (maybe you have one?) Let me enlighten you about a concept that your Apology 101 class apparently skipper over. Real leaders take and accept responsibility for their actions; when things go awry they don’t blame others or use misdirection to muddy the waters. The blame game is for politicians, bureaucrats and stalking horses.

    • @ BS Monitor:

      I agree with 99% of what you say but take exception on your last point. You and I both know there exists a credible difference of opinion between these NO and YES votes. Those voting no are not simply sympathizers of the afforementioned spoiled losing candidate. In fact I voted for both George and Jim. I resent the manner in which their YES position/vote was forced down the throats of the membership. Without a vetting of the positions and potential outcomes, a fully informed/educated vote was not possible. This is especially true because many simply follow the leadership. I will say, until the 11th hour side letter re Tier 2, I believe the outcome would have been different. Perhaps the votes of 429 officers will persuade them to alter their approach in future votes. That optimist tone is probably misplaced in this city. As they say, it is what it is and in this case, it is crap, and once again we are stuck with it. Long live the proud and strong SJPD…

      • BS Monitor, and Officer X,
        You both come on here bashing fellow Officers, and yet you don’t have the courage to put your name on your posts, so we know who you are, and you can be held accountable for your attacks on others. Yeah, yeah I know, you have to protect your job, and Yadda, Yadda.

        You two are starting to look really bad. You are hurting good Officers who deserve respect. You should be supporting one another, not using a public blog to bad mouth men who are out in the community actually helping people. Exactly what are YOU two doing to make things better for the community or anyone else?

        Having said that, to you Officers out there who actually do work hard and care about our community, this one’s for you! Stay safe out there and THANK YOU for your service.


        • The constant harping about using a real name is a waste of time.  Some people have a lot to lose by posting their real identity and it would seriously inhibit their ability to speak their honest opinion.  In an ideal world everyone could say what they are thinking without recriminations.  In reality sometimes we have to sacrifice knowing the actual identity of a person in order to read the content of their posts.

          I’d much rather read what BSM and others have to say than whip myself into a frenzy over who they really are.  Either the content is worthwhile or it is not.  Either you choose to believe accusations made, or you do not.  Not knowing who the person is really doesn’t automatically discount their credibility.  And in fact, I would bet some here use a fake name just to avoid the whining about identity.  Nobody calls somebody out when a first and last name is posted, even if it might be false.

          Attack the issues Kathleen, you do just fine in that arena and let the identity thing die.  Just my opinion.

        • No one but you really cares who they are. They could call themselves Don or Jack, just like you call yourself Kathleen. It really would not make a difference. They post, you comment. Just move on. It is what it is.

        • Give it up Kathleen, and Give it a rest,

          I seriously doubt that you’d feel that way if you were the person being bashed on a public blog by people you can’t confront. Secondly, many of the accusations being made are untrue, or half-truths, or are motivated by a personal/political agenda. I have confronted them with “just the facts,” in my posts and they continue to spread misinformation, regardless of the truth. If you go back and read my posts, you will see that many times they dodge direct questions. How then can I see them as “credible?” I don’t.

          I don’t have a problem with anyone disagreeing with policy, or even another person, or discussing politics. My problem is when he or she personally attacks others based on an agenda hidden from the rest of us. (And BTW- I do know whom these two are, and I know their motivation behind these attacks. I’m not outing them to you guys because I don’t believe two wrongs making a right. I also know their relationships to the folks they are bashing, hence the reason I so vehemently object to what they are doing.)

          On another note, I have a deep respect for our SJPD. They put their lives on the line for us everyday. I know the people they are bashing personally, I know how much they care about our community, and I find them being unfairly criticized by these two cowards, without the same ability to fight back.

          For years now, I have watched the San Jose Police Department be bashed by so-called community activists, and the Mercury News for doing their job. Now I see them being bashed by the public and politicians over their salary and benefits. I know the toll it is taking on these Officers’s moral. Enough is enough already.

          I don’t think that beating up fellow Officers is helping the public view them in a good light. If they have an issue with these guys, they need to put on their big boy panties, man up, and go talk to them, rather than coming on a blog anonymously and ripping them apart. It is counter productive and harmful to the reputations of the people they are bashing. 

          And finally, if people on here don’t like my comments then by all means, ignore them, but don’t come on and tell me that their right to freedom of expression supersedes mine. We live in the US and we are lucky to have that right and freedom.

        • Nobody really cares about that conversation but the two of you. That’s old news that nobody really cares about anymore. I didn’t even pay attention to it. All I saw was you and him going back and forth. It got really boring. Tomorrow, nobody will remember it.  We come here. We blog. We have our tiffs. We talk about and at each other. We tease. We argue…and we move on. Let it go and let it go away. Believe me, nobody will care, tomorrow.

        • I haven’t seen BSM really criticize the rank and file officers.  In fact, most of the posts I’ve read are far more supportive and actually very accurate as to what is really going on behind the scenes that most people know.  BSM does disparage Jose Salcido heavily but that doesn’t mean the regular officers are being targeted.  In fact, I’d say his opinion of Jose Salcido reflects most of the rank and file officer’s opinions that I’ve talked to.  As for confronting, even if everybody posted their real names, are you suggesting that they then be physically confronted?  Or should the target of a negative remark only respond if the comment is made by somebody who posts a first and last name?  Why not refute the allegation and the content of the remarks instead of worrying about who wrote it?

          As for the SJPD bashing, you are absolutely correct.  This is one of the reasons I always chose to work a midnight shift so I wouldn’t have to listen to the cacophony of snivelers who, like Bronco Bummah, always have something negative to say and incessantly complain no matter what is being done.  The fact is there are some people who will never be please no matter what.  And, there are some who, although they would never admit it publicly, would just love to completely disband all police and military entities.  This is their agenda and everything that comes out of their mouths and through their keyboards is to that end.

          When it comes to the people here bashing their fellow union members, trust me it is being done face to face in the POA meetings.  There have been several very heated meetings as members are very passionate about the issues.  Most of what is being said here against the POA leadership is being said to their faces in meetings and in private.  There is so much at stake that many are not shy about talking to each other in public.  This just happens to be one forum where citizens get to see it themselves.  And, if Beattie and Unland want to, they can come on any time and address the comments.  Since they don’t respond very often, I suspect they aren’t too concerned about the effects of the comments.

  11. What we need is a big Earthquake! With an inempt Police and Fire Dept. due to severe cuts, fires and looting will run rampent! I would love Reed to say then like he said to the Media yesterday, “Do you want Libraries or Public Safety?” What a disgrace! I am embarrassed to live here and I know EVERY City employee doesn’t care anymore just like REED!So much for pride to be a City employee! Shame on you!

  12. How much credibility does a angry ” very long time City Employee” soon to be Laid off whiner making unsupported accusation about ” corruption ” in city hall have ?  None.

    Why did this now upstanding ” very long time City Employee ” who has seen what goes on in city hall and Mayor’s office for years wait until now to develop backbone, personal integrity, ethics, moral upset and make public disclosure about but undocumented Mayor’s and Council’s political corruption ?  – Wondering Why ?

  13. Hey, long time city employees being laid off

    Now you known what the most of San Jose workers feel like, not fun is it

    Ever think that,  if YOU and other city employees had stopped wasting our taxes, stopped city corruption giving away taxes if any existed, stopping money losing and Council ego projects, worked for public rather than yourself, improved San Jose for businesses rather than making more costly and difficult so they, jobs and taxes went else elsewhere, worked smarter every day nd not tried to get hacve your Council members give you pay. benefits and pensions that most of residents do not have and city could not afford that maybe you would still have a city job ?

    City government is what city managers and employees create, improve and gets the results they deserve

    Try accepting some of blame and working with community to fix problems rather than blaming everyone else but yourself as many but not all do

    • Hi Taxpayer,

      I realize that you find great warmth basking in the glow of what you think is civic employees’ careers going up in a bonfire.

      Unfortunately for you, much like the other successful people in this community, they are rapidly being employed by other companies in the area. You think you’ve scored a victory and taught a lesson by bringing them down to your level of career failure, but you are simply being left with crappy city services while those laid-off cops, firefighters, attorneys and other city employees are being snatched up throughout the Bay area. In the midst of all these “layoffs”, 23 cops have QUIT to go work for other employers who are begging to have their services for HIGHER pay and benefits. Half the laid-off firefighters are ALREADY working for other departments.

      Personally, I left private employment and took a 52% pay cut six years ago to serve my community with some crazy sense of sacrifice to serve people like you. Well, now I get the message that you don’t want me unless I work for what… 60% less than industry pay, 70% less? I’m Ok with that, and I’m not complaining – I’m not going to force my experience and capabilities on you. But don’t cite generic national studies or weighted surveys that include Alabama and Mississippi, because I’m talking about the hard dollar figures of jobs being offered to me personally. And don’t talk to me about pensions, because my house was bought free and clear with several “annual bonuses” and “stock grants”, and my new car was bought outright with one “retention bonus”. Funny how “profit sharing”, “options”, and all those other components never seem to work their way into compensation comparisons.

      Honestly… thank you kindly for freeing me from City employment and forcing me to shake the illusion of greater service to the community. What a relief!

      The warmth you are enjoying isn’t my career going up in flames….

  14. Watch videos of the past few council sessions paying particular attention to body language and verbal communication of those controlling the throne, add in token 60 second public testimony’s and you have a stacked deck world class dog and pony show.

    If this was a military operation unions lost this battle and when the now castrated unions who apparently lost their fortitude concede retirement benefits or fail to defend those already retired they will have lost the war. Regrettably SJ employees are victims and due to lack of or reduced public service/safety residents and vistors of SJ collateral damage.

  15. Hey it sounds like this guys has every right to complain.  This person doesn’t have to prove anything to you.  As you all know Reed and Council are corrupt and I have been saying that for years now.  If you youngsters want to attack someone attack Reed and Council for the the continued mess they have put the citizens in.  This person is losing their job and has every right to tell what they know.  How do you know this person can’t support the statements made, are you clairvoyant?  Anyway Sorry to hear about the cops losing positions and others that are being laid off.  These are bad and embarrassing times for the City of San Jose

    Old Frank

  16. POA “Negotiations” Team:

    Perhaps you can save us ALOT of time, energy, and money with re to the next contract. Instead of talking tough @ the POA hall and briefings maybe you could simply ask Reed the Terrible how much he wants next time. You can then roll over, again, and do as he demands. BTW, I’d think we’d all like to see and end to PAC contributions. You wasted it. You could have saved us all alot of money if we knew you were gonna cave. And please, STOP being apologists for the damn city hall. It is disgusting and you sound like weak freshmen who are being pushed around by the seniors on campus. If it were not so pathetic it would be funny.

  17. Who would have thought the most courageous employees in San Jose would have turned out to be the unsung heroes supporting the infrastructure behind the scenes not Police and Fire. They are the skilled people the Mayor and the public do not realize exist, they dispatch emergency responders, repair fire trucks and sewers, treat water, repair buildings, maintain parks, fix roads and streetlights and erase graffiti.  Groups that have suffered pay freezes, pay reductions, increased health care cost and layoffs for years.  There are two reasons certain groups have rolled over and it’s because their own leadership does not understand pensions and more significantly they do not truly believe they are worth the benefits and pay they are receiving. Bottom line the Unfunded Liability is an absolute scam.  The Mayor has fooled the taxpayers, other council members and even some employees who do not understand pension plans.  The deficit starts at $35 million then grows to $45 million, then $60 million, and then $115 million all in a few months and the culprit a healthy pension plan that’s over 85% funded and now attached a ridicules due bill in 5 years for the remaining 15 %? This is a scam and the latest victims are PD and the safe City standards residents are accustomed to.  To see a Fire lobbyist blast other workers in the San Jose Mercury News for standing up to a bully Mayor is why services are being cut, because the progress of the City’s game of divide and conquer.  The only way to stop these out of control politicians is to vote no together (like Ben Franklin said, you can hang separately or you hang together?).  The next time you see a dispatcher, librarian, or worker repairing a sewer, thank them for their service and their courage. They are the ones putting their modest lively hoods on the line against a Bully council and a bush league management team not willing to bargain in good faith. Stop the pension scam and service reductions, they are unnecessary and destroying San Jose.  This strategy along with his goal of outsourcing services is a decision by a person who’s not long for the job and looking for a structural legacy like a baseball stadium.  There’s no pension-fiscal crisis it’s a complete scam.  Employees pay for it and politicians can’t touch it. San Jose and its infrastructure, services, workers and ultimately the residents are suffering under the foot of Reed.

  18. “No future meetings for negotiations are currently scheduled, Unland said.”

    Really Jim? Well, of course. No more are needed. THEY JUST KICKED YOUR ASS. THEY ARE DONE WITH YOU FOR NOW.

  19. @Officer X

    If, from your perspective, the membership was shorted and the vote was rushed, who am I to argue? It is your perspective, and from the content of your post I’m willing to accept that you’re an informed and reasonable person. Maybe the leadership could’ve done better, and maybe you have a legitimate reason for being dissatisfied, but maybe, and here I’m offering my opinion, the leadership was operating from a no-win situation.

    Consider these factors:

    —1st Tier Layoffs. By announcing the layoffs as unavoidable even before negotiations were underway the City effectively changed the bargaining environment by creating a victim class of officers (those to be sacrificed to budget “necessities”), thus cracking the traditionally ironclad sense of unity among the POA membership. From that point forward the POA negotiating team would not, no matter their efforts, be able to politically free itself of those casualties. They had failed before they started.

    —2nd Tier Layoffs. These “up for grabs” positions—tied to a take it or lose them 10% cut, left POA negotiators faced with a new dilemma, that of negotiating for both the few (the 2nd Tier officers) as well as the many (everyone else). The rift created within the membership, one that no doubt pleased Ms. Figone as she plotted the capture of the ruby slippers, was severe and crippling, saddling the negotiating team with the lose-lose proposition of playing chicken with its own members careers.

    —The Negotiation Stall. In a move that demonstrated, once again, the City’s unique definition of “good faith bargaining,” its negotiating team prematurely threw-up its hands and set this City on a collision course with massive layoffs. The cost to the City for this move: zero. The cost to the POA: huge, as it put its leadership, and to a considerable degree the membership itself, in a position where the price for standing up to the City’s cheap tactics would, for the first time, not be shared equally among the traditionally strong membership, but would be paid by only a few (the 2nd Tier officers). The POA, which had already offered the 10% cut originally demanded, owed it to these 2nd Tier officers to—at the very least—get back to the table.

    —Reopened Negotiations. Notwithstanding Ms. Figone’s dreams of a bargain basement, 900 man department, it was a certainty that prior to the deadline there would be political pressure from one or more quarters to get back to the table. That’s just the way things work. But whether the pressure would be sufficient was not so certain; and who can really say, absent the bodies piling up on the streets, that negotiations would’ve resumed? Mayor Reed was more than ready to blame the cops for the layoffs, as were Ms. Figone and her winged monkeys on the negotiating team (not to mention the creeps at the Mercury News). And the product would’ve sold, given the public’s poisoned mindset. But to sell the public that the huge spike in the murder rate was the cops’ fault, now that’s a pile of dung that not even these gifted dung beetles could sell. And they knew it, so back to the table they went and, with negotiations back on, everything—the layoffs, the crime rate, the budget woes, could again be dumped onto the backs of those greedy cops (with a simple call to the Mercury). The POA was in a pinch; it owed its membership a contract to consider but the time was, because of the City’s engineered stall, brutally short.

    Never in history has a POA president been faced with so daunting a task. George Beattie, besides having to confront the balance due for decades of city mismanagement, was denied the traditional and simple “best for the most” negotiating strategy, robbed of the chance to protect every member’s job, and deprived of a vocal and supportive public. The man never got a break.

    The POA cannot do anything to make the City budget responsibly, nor can it make the City bargain fairly, but what it can do to protect itself against the cheap tactics just used is change its bylaws so as to restrict its leadership and bargaining team from acknowledging or addressing any layoffs proposed, threatened, or promised by the City. If this last process has proved anything it is that when bargaining for wages and benefits looming layoffs are every bit as coercive as a loaded gun. Force the City to confine its threats to the public it is sworn to protect and spare the membership the grief of wrestling with ugly possibilities beyond its control.

    Lastly, from the posts here it’s obvious that you and many others are of the opinion that the POA is the first and only line of defense against the City’s underhanded tactics. It’s not. In fact, the boldest and most effective move ever undertaken was planned and executed by officers who, recognizing the laws and liabilities that handcuff bargaining units, took action on their own, creating a political shit storm powerful enough to force the City to do what was right. It was a victory by forces outside the POA, one that put the City on notice in a way the POA never could, but one that nonetheless made the POA stronger than ever. There are many ways to flex your muscles; next round I suggest you try one.

    • The POA negotiating team was doomed from the start.  The cards were stacked against them from the outset and they really only had two choices.  First, they could do what they did which was to try and stall layoffs for as long as possible.  This is a gamble hoping that the economy rebounds somewhat and that the consequences of fewer cops becomes more pronounced and understood by the general public.

      The second option was to fight by going to arbitration.  Should the POA have done that, Figone and Reed would have been just as happy.  They, along with their partner the Mercury News, would have broadcast long and loud that the only union not to agree to tighten the belt and make sacrifices like every other bargaining unit, was the greedy POA.  As a result, they would have continued to have overwhelming support from the citizens.  This would have meant a nearly immediate laying off of Tier 1 officers.

      I am not talking about sending out pink slips, but actually having the officers clean out their lockers and leave.  Well over 100 officers would probably already be gone.  There would be ample time then for Figone and Reed to wet their fingers and stick them in the political air to judge the winds.  The actual arbitration hearings would be months away or more giving the city time to see how the citizens would react.  Should public anger against the POA still be rampant, then I believe the city would have enacted the Tier 2 layoffs as well.  Another 100+ officers out the door. You know Reed would blame any rise in crime on the greed of the POA forcing them to lay off officers.

      Now Reed and Figone have reached their goal of only 900 officers.  There would be immediate savings in salaries and you can bet that the city would broadcast this far and wide.  But, with an arbitration hearing coming up the city would continue their forecasts of doom and gloom as well.  The POA would go into arbitration making the argument by then that the city was far more solvent due to the layoffs so no need for any pay cuts, pensions changes, etc.  The city would still make the argument that for long-term solvency they still need a 10% pay cut and pension reform.  I predict that the arbitrator would have handed down a contract similar to the one that the POA just negotiated anyway.  The only difference is no side letter on Tier 2 layoffs since those were already done.

      In the end, the POA could have fought the city and made some members feel good about going down fighting.  Public support though would have been non-existent, as it still is, and the city would have probably laid off 300 cops.  The POA would still have a contract forced on them in about a year from now that would have nearly as bad as the one they just got but with only 900 members voting on it.  As it is, the POA and the city kicked the can down the road for a year or two but come next contract, the same tactics will be used by the city if the economy doesn’t have some miraculous recovery in the meantime.

      So POA members, you can vote Beattie out next election, stomp your feet in frustration, and understandably and justifiably despise the city and the citizens for the way they are treating you.  But the reality was that you were going to take a big bite of a shit sandwich whether you liked it or not.  The only question was, how many eat it and when.

      • That was stated with so much oversimplification that it seems you are either A: a dolt. Or B: one Jim Dumbland’s friends.

        An intelligent person would have begun two years ago to A: establish strong ties politically and in the community while B: refuting with facts, the Mayor’s baseless accusations and C: use the city’s finances to prove the financial crisis is greatly exaggerated.

        But the POA fumbled every step of the way. That’s why you cops had to accept that bad contract. You allowed yourselves to be cornered through total ineptitude.

        • That would have been a good tactic if you could refute the facts, but you can’t.  This mayor has been sddressing hte strucutral budget deficit the last several years while the union leaders still thought they could buy votes on the Council.  Those days are gone (good riddens) and are why the unions are having such a difficult time in facing the facts and negative public sentiment.  As for the City finances, you and others keep pointing to the overall finances like they are all interchangable, but there are requirements, laws and charter sections that prohibit shifting the moneys from the various funds.  If we can focus on how to change the laws and charter sections, we may have something but it will take some time., Just pointing to it and ignoring the rules does no good. The financial crisis is real, just ask the average citizen whos is struggling.

        • “An intelligent person would have begun two years ago to A: establish strong ties politically and in the community….”

          He went on the radio and tv and basically won over the citizens, who now hate our guts. He knew what he was doing. He’s a lawyer. When playing the lawyer game, an attorney tries to discredit the other side in front of the jurors. WE are the other side and THAT is what he did. He brought those jurors to his side with whatever it took, and now WE are waiting for deliberations. Reminds me of Johnny Cochran who told so many untruths, brought the jurors to his side and got OJ off the hook, for double homicide. Shortly thereafter, Johnny was diagnosed with brain cancer. Somebody “upstairs” didn’t take kindly to what he did and it came back on him. Karma. I know where HE is.

        • Revealing you need to A: learn more about the role of unions and San Jose politics.  Or B: Go back to your TV and ignore this forum.  Reed is a politician.  It can be argued that Beattie and Unland are somewhat politicians but they are actually cops playing bush league politics for a small part of the time and trying to negotiate benefits and pay for their members full time.

          Reed has the unbeatable advantage of being a two-term councilperson and a second term mayor.  This gives him constant exposure to the public in many arenas and it certainly didn’t hurt that he had the Murky News in his pocket.  The POA leadeship spends much of their time handling internal matters at the PD and many other tasks other than going out and kissing the public’s ass. 

          As a result, the POA could have tried to “establish strong political ties” with the community but they would never have the kind of access and consistent interaction with the public like the mayor and the councilpeople can.  That is their job and they do it full time.  Reed has the luxury of 8 years as a councilperson and 4+ years as mayor to establish his base and broadcast his message.  It certainly is a bonus that his message inflames any member of the public who has been hurt at all by the downturn in the economy and points them at the paper tiger that Reed has created in the unions.  Reed was brilliant in establishing targets for public angst and directing attention away from his record.  It isn’t only the POA that was inept, but the public as well, and they still are.

          The POA didn’t fumble, the die was cast from the outset.  It didn’t matter who the POA leadership was, they were going to lose this one from the start.  I don’t disagree that Beattie and Unland were way out of their league. But I believe any POA president and vice-president would have been out manueuvered by this mayor and city manager. Reed and Figone played it masterfully with the benefit of holding all the cards on top of their political skills.  Oh, and the contract was going to be bad no matter who was negotiating.  The economy does suck, the city has hidden any money that they could use for public safety rather well, and all the other unions either folded or were imposed on with lousy contracts as well.

    • @ BS Monitor

      I appreciate your civil, informed, articulate, and very insightful posts.  Re:

      “In fact, the boldest and most effective move ever undertaken was planned and executed by officers who, recognizing the laws and liabilities that handcuff bargaining units, took action on their own, creating a political shit storm powerful enough to force the City to do what was right.”

      To what are you referring?

    • Most of the laid off police officers are finding jobs rather quickly with other agencies.  Feel sorry for your crime rate, declining safety, city reputation, and diminished quality of life.  This is what is so surprising to many of the officers.  Reed has the public convinced that destroying city worker morale, reducing staff to ridiculously low levels through layoffs and driving workers elsewhere and then paying for lower qualified city workers when the hiring starts again in several years is somehow a good thing.  Are all of you really that gullible?

      • I feel sorry for what they did to you. I am happy that the officers are finding jobs, elsewhere. No one should have to work for an employer who treats them with such disdain and uses dishonest tactics to further their goals.

        As for feeling sorry for the crime rate, declining safety, etc…, I just intend to hunker down in my home until I can leave this city. I am no longer happy here. It was never my intention to live where the government cannot take care of its city. Fortunately, I have the means to move as I choose.

        I think the way that all of the city employees have been treated is disgraceful. I come from a time when one had great pride in their workplace and the employers took care of their employees, akin to a big family atmosphere. Those times are long gone; however, I have lived many places and I have never in my lifetime seen or heard of a city treating their employees the way this city had treated all of you. Yes, I do feel sorry. I have been in this city for many, many years. It has been a clean and safe city, but it has become a city that I look at differently, now. It is time to move on. Thank you for your service and good luck with everything.

  20. Sergeant X,

    In the late 70’s, in the third year of the City’s refusal to negotiate a contract (despite double-digit inflation), a group of beat cops organized an effective and headline grabbing two day sickout. In response to the City’s efforts to mislead the public and deny the widespread support for this action among the rank and file, Sgt. Dalton Rolen, a spokesman for the department’s detectives, addressed the next meeting of the city council and informed that body (and the packed house) that the public was being intentionally misled, stating that had the detectives been aware of the job action they would’ve readily participated in it. It was at that point, during the thunderous ovation given that honorable, selfless sergeant, that the council accepted the obvious: its hardass city manager, so eager to make his mark in his profession’s Bastard’s Club, had pushed the troops too far. The cops were more united than ever.

    This was the job action which, besides publicizing the City’s inexcusable labor practices and getting the long-sought, fair contract, provided the momentum for the political campaign to secure binding arbitration—the very mechanism that delivered to this city over 30 years of labor peace. Obviously, what was accomplished then has now been targeted by Mayor Reed and Ms. Figone, each with no real understanding of the great and lasting damage that they do.

      • 40 years of collective bargaining rights have taken a crippling toll that the private sector has heretofore patiently endured. But there are limits to our patience.

        A City employee sick-in? In 2011?
        Go ahead. Make my day.

        • To see the posts from John and others in five years osr so when San Jose is just another big city with big time crime like LA, SF, etc.  Lesser qualified officers, rampant blight, corruption, and all the other good things that come with self-serving politicians and citizens who will cut off their nose to spite their face.  I don’t see organized sick ins, but I do see employees using up sick time in a new use it or lose it format.  At the PD where on any given shift there were usually 3-4 sick call ins out of 100 officers preparing for a shift it is already up to a dozen or so. 

          So, the city’s brilliant sick leave buyout plan that is so decried will be done away with and then sick call in percentages will start mimicking the private sector.  Of course the city won’t hire more employees to counter the vacancies caused by sick time, vacation time, training, or other absences.  Pretty soon you will see 50-60 officers working a shift in a city of one million people.  I hope you own a gun John, you’ll need it.

        • I predicted that in the future some police shifts would be going out with 50-60 officers.  Apparently I was wrong, they are already doing so.  There are now so many absences in some patrol shifts that there are only 50+ officers on the streets working a nearly 200 square mile city populated by at least a million people.  That is a recipe for an explosion of crime that is no doubt building like a Mt. St. Helens preparing to blow.  Better check the gun stores for upcoming sales.  A couple of really good events and the entire city will be wiped out for police services. 

          I suppose we can call for Milpitas, Morgan Hill, Santa Clara, Sunnyvale, and other surrounding agencies to help.  Well, except for the fact that they are so small that they wipe out their complete force as well so that might not be a good idea. We can always call the Sheriff’s Department to help except that they are working for various city’s as contract officers and can’t leave unless they want to give up their compensation.  I know, CHP can come and help us out.

      • “I think ALL unions should unite and participate in a sickout. Call it the “Red Flu”, to symbolize outrage.”

        This just in…  The ship of public employee unions has crashed upon the rocks of government insolvency and empty taxpayer wallets.

        Adapt yourself comrade!

        • Go grope a bimbo. Isn’t that what you said you feel like doing, once in a while? The ship has not crashed until the fat lady sings. There is no music, yet. Standby.

  21. As a local business owner who is sympathetic to the treatment and wages of those who serve our city, I took it upon myself to research your current police union leaders. I came across this youtube clip that told me a lot about the dynamic duo that brought this hideous and atrocious contract to it’s membership.

    This had to be a public relations nightmare of epic proportions and a true indication of what was to come.

    The first few minutes are priceless.


  22. LOL! LMAO!

    If SanJoseInside were a fancy masquerade ball your businessman’s mask wouldn’t fool the parking attendant.

    A businessman “sympathetic to the treatment and wages of those who serve our city” who focuses on personalities? I don’t think so. A businessman’s eye goes to the balance sheet and stays there: dollars and cents, black or red, succeed or fail.

    Best keep working on that disguise. You might try turning off TMZ and picking up a copy of Business Week.

  23. start the recall effort? My understanding is that 40,000 signatures are needed. Run it on loss of public safety and what this lay off is going to mean to the public and the dishonesty associated with this whole mess. They are already pissed. I think it should be pretty easy to get those 40,000 signatures.

    • Reed has most of the public completely hypnotized and marching in lockstep with him right now.  All the talk of a recall is pointless.  Only time will reveal his charade. By then though he will be long gone and blame any fallout of his short-sighted policies on subsequent politicians.

  24. As the members want to leave will the Union hold them hostage?  Come up with some hidden line in a contract hidden with in a contract.  Can anyone answer this?

    • If you are talking about the police union, the POA, then you might want to educate yourself on who the “union” really is.  I think you and many others view the POA as being run by this separate entity that exists outside of the regular police force.  In fact, the “union” is comprised of every member.  The president, vice-president, and union representatives run for office and are voted in by the majority of union members.  These positions change frequently.  There have been numerous presidents over the years and even more union reps. 

      These positions come up for re-election frequently and in the case of the union reps, the board changes quite often.  There isn’t some star chamber that never sees new members until someone dies like the Supreme Court.  All these calls for a new bargaining unit are a joke since whatever organization takes over from the POA will be a mirror image of what the POA is now.  Somebody would run for the top leadership position and there would be a board of directors. 

      Lastly, POA members don’t want to leave the union.  A small handful are disgruntled and that is typical of any organization.  Some of them are just sour grapes as their candidates didn’t win in the elections.  This move to the FOP or some other plan is not going anywhere and is simply shit disturbing by sore losers.

        • Of course union members can choose not to be a member of their union.  However, that union is still the bargaining unit for their wages and benefits.  The city recognizes the POA as the police employee bargaining unit and whatever they negotiate results in a pay and benefits contract for all police employees whether they are union members or not.

      • Sounds quite different from the Fire Union who had the same President for over 15 years and he ran them into the ground.  All other unions hated them.  Even had a VP fired from the City for fraud.  It was a dictatorship there, hopefully it is changing and good luck to the POA as they move forward in these tough times.

  25. >  San Jose cops agreed to concessions by a 674-429 vote, POA Vice President Jim Unland said.

    Absolutely, totally, cloud-cuckoo-land insanity!

    A sovereign branch of government—ANY branch of government—does NOT negotiate or “collectively bargain” with its police force.

    How many rights and how much property and wealth the citizens of a community are allowed to retain should NEVER be determined by a vote of the POLICE FORCE.  This is nuts!

    A purported “police officer” stated in this forum that collective bargaining was necessary because the relationship between the city and the police officers was “adversarial”.

    Maybe in your Leninist comics books, but not in a healthy civil society.

    Any government that has an adversarial relationship with its very own police force and does not IMMEDIATELY impose order and discipline is half way to a police state.  And if ONE cop thinks that half way to a police state is not good enough that is a cop that CANNOT be entrusted with a badge and a gun and the authority to arrest citizens.

    Police unions have GOT TO GO!

  26. If the RDA is dissolved by the governor, what happens to the funds, assets (parcels of land that may or may not host a baseball stadium, etc) and the “$20 million worth of redevelopment obligations for the next fiscal year” that the general fund will be covering?  Does it go back into the General Fund?

  27. Any government that has an adversarial relationship with its very own police force and does not IMMEDIATELY impose order and discipline is half way to a police state.  And if ONE cop thinks that half way to a police state is not good enough that is a cop that CANNOT be entrusted with a badge and a gun and the authority to arrest citizens.


    There is so much wrong with your latest rant that I’m not sure where to start. You’ve found a way to confuse an individual’s right to barter his services—an essential right in a free society, with a government’s surrender of its authority .

    There is, and has never been, an adversarial element in the relationship between the services provided by the men and women of the San Jose Police Department and the codified laws and ordinances they are sworn to enforce (remember, they are “law” enforcers, not the mayor’s mercenaries). The City of San Jose does not command its police force. No one at city hall, whether elected or appointed, has the authority to direct this city’s police officers in the performance of their lawful duties. As a matter of fact, to even attempt to do so would constitute a violation of the law. The checks and balances between the legislative and executive branches of government apply at every level—even to that collection of clowns and con artists we elect to the council. The oath of office commits a police officer to upholding the Constitution (both federal and state), not the whims of the transient, biased, and typically untrustworthy politicians who happen to be holding office. Outside of the authority to pass local ordinances, neither our elected leaders nor the city manager has any lawful role in law enforcement (despite the fact that idiot mayors like Gavin Newsom and Chuck Reed think they have the authority to pick and choose which laws matter and which don’t).

    The San Jose POA, the bargaining unit recognized by the city administration as representing the interests of the department’s members, confines its relationship with the city to matters of wages, benefits, and working conditions. It’s only power is it collective voice, representative of men and women who are just as free as you are to barter for their labor. And that is all the cops have ever done: bartered with their employer, who like all employers, will have many factors to consider, but will always have the final say.

    This city would be in infinitely better shape if its police chiefs bartered for their labor with the same level of integrity demonstrated by the POA; but rather than respecting sworn oaths, checks and balances, or the public good, our spineless police chiefs have traditionally bartered their authority and autonomy for job security (and hefty paychecks), thus opening up a sewer line so the mayor can soil the police department with his flavor of political crap.

    Cops are not indentured servants or slaves, though obviously you and a number of people posting on this site seem to think differently. They do not “retain” the public’s wealth, they earn it.

    • > There is, and has never been, an adversarial element in the relationship between the services provided by the men and women of the San Jose Police Department and the codified laws and ordinances they are sworn to enforce (remember, they are “law” enforcers, not the mayor’s mercenaries).

      Mr. Monitor, Sir:

      I much admire your public-spirited, and selfless monitoring of BS on behalf of the community.

      Nonetheless, I regret to say that I think you have fallen into learned error.

      On this very forum, a poster purporting to be a police officer baldly asserted that there is an “adversarial” relationship between the police union and the city government.  And, by the way, the police union IS the police officers.

      The mayor is not some freelance warlord who walked into City Hall and started barking orders to cops because he’s just a Type A personality who likes bossing people aroung.  The mayor is a constitutional governing agent acting by and for the citizens of San Jose.

      An “adversarial” relationship with the mayor is an adversarial relationship with the citizens of San Jose.

  28. The police need to follow the political leadership to a T.  No dissent of any kind, no expressions of opinions, no questioning of orders.  Are you really that clueless?  The ability to disagree, speak your mind, refuse to participate in something you find morally incorrect, rebel against oppression, demand reasonable compensation, fight unfairness, question leadership, etc. is what this country was founded on.  Talk about a police state.  That is what happens when politicians realize that their power is absolute.  If police and military personnel start obeying without question our politicians, you better join the NRA and start stocking up on guns and ammo.  You will need it sooner or later.  BB, you are a wack job pure and simple.

    • > The police need to follow the political leadership to a T.  No dissent of any kind, no expressions of opinions, no questioning of orders.


      If the police want to dissent, they can resign their police jobs and work for change through the CONSTITUTIONAL process.

      Ever heard of the Constitution?

      > The ability to disagree, speak your mind, refuse to participate in something you find morally incorrect, rebel against oppression, demand reasonable compensation, fight unfairness, question leadership, etc. is what this country was founded on.  Talk about a police state.  That is what happens when politicians realize that their power is absolute.

      Your definition of a “police state” seems to be when the police DON’T get their way.

      You have it EXACTLY backwards.  When the police always get their way, that is the definition of a police state.

      • That the police always got there way.  BB you are so clueless to reality that it really is disturbing.  What we are discussing here is wages and benefits.  You seem to want to twist this into some kind of Constitutional law event.  I have news for you, the police enforce the laws on the books, period.  They don’t “get their way” when a law is passed that an individual officer may not philosophically agree with, they enforce it anyway.  They don’t “get their way” when a politician they despise is voted in by the majority.  They can’t throw them out of office or assassinate them.  They don’t “get their way” when a jury decides not to find somebody they arrested not guilty and the person is let go. They don’t get to go and throw them back in jail absent a new crime.  They don’t “get their way” when the brass tells them to go and write tickets in some neighborhood based on the volume of accidents or complaints when they’d rather be arresting dope dealers or burglars.  They don’t get their way when citizens can burn the flag, march for causes they believe are the antithesis of American values, and they have to stand by and do nothing.

        You are trying to somehow label the police as oppressive just because they have a union who is trying to improve their pay and benefits. Pay and benefits that they receive only after the other side agrees to a contract.  You are wrong on so many levels and your credibility just went down even further down the growler.  If you want to find out what a real police state is, go over to Iran, North Korea, or any other despotic country.  The U.S. is the most free nation on the earth and yes, the police have heard of the Constitution as they routinely die protecting it. 

        Now, please respond with another tin foil hat decertify the unions post, they are just so original.

        • “Police are a malignant idea for a free and civil society.  The sooner we get rid of them, the better.”

          Why don’t you post what you really mean.  At some point you probably got a jaywalking ticket and now you have a hard on for the police.  I would suggest counseling and avoiding those fringe websites along with removing the tin foil from your head and home windows.

        • > The police need to follow the political leadership to a T.  No dissent of any kind, no expressions of opinions, no questioning of orders.  Are you really that clueless?


          If the police want to dissent, they can resign their police jobs and work for change through the CONSTITUTIONAL process

          > You are trying to somehow label the police as oppressive just because they have a union who is trying to improve their pay and benefits.

          I am labeling any policeman as oppressive who thinks that he doesn’t work at the direction of—AND ONLY AT THE DIRECTION OF—the constituted civil authority.

          Any policemen who harasses or arrests people at the direction of the police union is a rogue cop who should be kicked off the police force, and thrown in the slammer for a good long time. 

          Any cop who conspires or colludes with other cops to undermine the good order and discipline of the police force CONTRARY to the direction of constituted civil authority is a rogue cop who should be kicked off the police force, and thrown in the slammer for a good long time.

          The whole concept of a police “union” is contrary to sovereign government by the people for the people.

          The police MUST ALWAYS be servants of the people and NEVER masters.

          When the police union starts getting ideas of how much they are going to DEMAND to be paid, and how big their pensions MUST BE, and how hard they are going to work and allow their colleagues to work, they are disrespecting and infringing on the civil authority and the sovereignty of the people.

          Police unions are a malignant idea for a free and civil society.  The sooner we get rid of them, the better.

        • > Here BB, I fixed it for ya

          Wow!  You really showed me!

          You showed me that a moron can win an argument with a genius if the moron gets to invent things for the genius to say.

          With this marvelous technique of yours, you should be able to win just about any argument.

          Still, keeping in mind that you ARE a moron, I wouldn’t rule out the possibility that you COULD lose an argument with yourself.

  29. Supporters of unions minimize the significance of the personal freedom that is lost when we prohibit an individual from negotiating the terms of his own employment. So you’re discriminating against the individuals right to work. And you’re discriminating against the right of the employer. Somehow the enormity of this transgression of our fundamental values is lost on you. You’re using the law to magnify the power and importance of the collective at the expense of the individual. I know most of you scoff when the word ‘socialism’ is mentioned. But this IS the very definition of socialism. And it’s the opposite of freedom. And it DOES cause very destructive side effects. 
    I’m a contractor and if I and my competition ‘collectively bargained’ for contracts in this manner it’d be considered price fixing and we’d be subject to arrest- and rightly so.

  30. > I’m a contractor and if I and my competition ‘collectively bargained’ for contracts in this manner it’d be considered price fixing and we’d be subject to arrest- and rightly so.

    I’m not a “labor lawyer”, but I have been told by knowledgeable sources that labor laws exempt labor unions from “anti-racketeering” laws.

    In a more honest society, this exemption might be described as a “license to steal”.

  31. People have a choice whether or not they want to be in the unions.  People choose to be in the union because there is far more bargaining power collectively than there is as an individual. They freely make the choice to join and are not forced to sign on the dotted line at the point of a bayonet.  Your example as a contractor is apples and oranges from public union membership.  Each police officer, firefighter, etc. isn’t an independent contractor who goes to the city and negotiates for themselves for a reason.  The city quite frankly doesn’t want to contract with each person separately.  In fact, the city would just as soon get rid of the unions as you seem to want but would certainly not then view each employee as an individual.

    The city would simply post the wages and benefits for each job and you can take it or leave it.  There would be no negotiating at all.  The city would offer a fixed pay and benefits package for each job and individual applicants would not be given a nanosecond to argue that the pay was too low or the benefits not adequate.  Every business would love to get rid of all unions for this very reason.  Before the rise of the unions this was the case and big businesses took advantage of it.  Unions were the result of unscrupulous big business trampling on the basic human rights of workers.

    You remember the American Revolution right John?  You know, back when a government decided they controlled everything and set tax levels, pay scales, controlled commerce, individual freedoms, etc.  Back when the individual really had no say until they did what?  Collectively took on those in power who took advantage.  I can’t imagine your idea of individualism would have worked too well then and it doesn’t now. 

    This isn’t to say that some unions haven’t gotten too big for their britches.  But the market ultimately will control how much a union is able to get out of their employers.  Sometimes it comes quickly, sometimes it comes slowly like it did in Detroit.  Ultimately a company can be ruined by a union, but only if they let them.  Unions can certainly also abuse their power and some have done so.  There needs to be a balance between both sides and close scrutiny of both at all times.

    While it pulls at the heartstrings to invoke thoughts of unions destroying liberties, it just isn’t the case in California.  Most unions simply maintain a balance between the interests of the employer and the interests of the employee.  There will be times when it is very adversarial and other times it can be amicable.  There are many cities where the government and the unions get along quite well and function as a team.

    This is the point so many seem to miss here.  When the government vilifies the employees, disparages them daily in the news as the root of all financial problems, seeks to take away pay and benefits that they previously gave out willingly, and treats them as second class citizens, the employees are certainly not going to hold hands and sing kumbaya with those leaders.

    I have been to many cities where the government and the workers sacrifice together and reap the benefits of the good times together.  That is San Jose’s problem in a nutshell.  San Jose has always treated its employees as a necessary evil.  Bargaining has never been in good faith and has been adversarial even in the good times.  Just like the American Revolution eventually people do band together collectively, not as individuals, and say enough is enough.  This collective effort benefits the individual, it does not diminish them.  It empowers the individual to accomplish things they would not be able to do singularly. 

    As for Socialism, you might want to educate yourself on the true meaning. Socialism is defined first as advocating governmental ownership of the production and distribution of goods.  Governmental, not union.  In fact, unions can provide a counter-balance to a government that attempts to control too much power.  Secondly, Socialism advocates the lack of private property and seeks to redistribute it to the collective.  No union has ever advocated redistribution of property, let alone pay.  Each union serves to represent their members and in some cases, compete with other unions for their slice of the pie.  No union wants to see government redistribute wealth evenly as it may reduce what they believe is their true value.

    Third, Socialism results in equal distribution of goods and pay despite an unequal amount of work done.  No union member I’ve ever talked to wants to see an equalization across the board of pay for each union member ignoring their skill set, work assignment, level of risk, education, specialized training, longevity, or career path.  In fact, each union fights very hard to make the argument that their membership is invaluable above all others.  The system is competitive, which is the antithesis of Socialism.

    John, I think your John Birch Society materials have become a bit outdated.  You need to go out and do some more homework on California unions and Socialism.  You also might be surprised to find out that there are a significant number of fiscal conservative union members with Libertarian leanings in the membership, including myself.

  32. John Galt,

    The San Jose POA is not a union. It is an association of officers who originally came together to lobby for the tools and training necessary to better serve the public—tools and training the City was unmotivated to provide. The POA’s efforts, coupled with those of other professional organizations around the state, led to the establishment of statewide standards of training and elevated policing in California to that of a national model.

    It was about seven years after its formation the POA first entered the compensation fray, ultimately garnering for its members benefits and working conditions long-established in the private sector, such as time-and-a-half pay for holidays, full pay for hours worked, the provision of safety equipment, safe vehicle standards, etc. Not a single one of these basic, and in some cases legally mandated, “benefits” was ever offered by the City without first being pressed for by the POA. Simply put, the City made the POA a necessity.

    The distinct business entity under your ownership, let’s call it, Galt Contracting, offers to its various clients a specific service, at prices influenced by factors such as the cost of materials, client expectations, unique worksite challenges, and competitive pressure. Now is there, as you insist, a similarity between your situation and that of police officers? Absolutely, but that similarity is not shared by Galt Contracting and every individual police officer: it is shared by Galt Contracting and every group of police officers serving a particular department. Just as it is not feasible for every employee of Galt Contracting to bargain prices with the clients (who ultimately pay their salaries), it is not feasible for every individual police officer to bargain with the City.

    If anything, the situation between the POA and the City benefits the City in a way unrealized by your clients, because it is the City that has handpicked each and every person who will ever join the POA. Every cop on the department has met or exceeded the City’s unique standards (in psych profile, education, personal background, race, gender, etc.). The competitive pressure in this particular equation is represented in the City’s selectivity and the suitability of the labor pool.

    Having the POA do its bargaining deprives individual SJ officers of something only if you believe that something can be constructed out of a stack of impossible, for it is simply impossible for every SJ cop to sit down with the City every year and workout his/her own deal. The situation demands representation and the representation provided is the product of the ballot box. Sounds pretty American to me.

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