Righeimer's Big Lie
Tonight Costa Mesa Mayor Pro Tem Jim Righeimer and Councilwoman Wendy Leece were invited to speak on Fox News at 11 on the Costa Mesa outsourcing issue. In a great stroke of irony, considering the fact that the Righeimer-led majority on the council recently voted to dissolve the ABLE helicopter program, fully half of the hour-long newscast was preempted by their coverage of a pursuit - which included participation of not one but two law enforcement helicopters!
LEECE FIRST, RIGHEIMER SECOND
When the Costa Mesa segment finally began both Righeimer and Leece were given two chances to respond to questions. Leece went first in both cases, and made her point that the outsourcing plan was unnecessary, and outlined some of the efforts taken in recent months to reduce the budget gap by reducing the size of the city staff, which she referred to now as "bare bones". Righeimer emphasized his view that we had "blown through $30 million in reserves over the past two years."
THE LAST QUESTION TO RIGHEIMER
Anchor Susan Hirasuna asked Righeimer his final question, "But Jim, do you know how much it's going to cost to outsource all these services? Whether or not it will actually save any money?", to which he said the following:
"Listen, it will save money simply because the load cost that costs onto an employee. If you've got a 30 or 40% cost addition for a normal employee from the private sector your gonna do it for a lot less. Understand, in this outsourcing process, like with the Fire Department, the Orange County Fire Authority has already offered jobs to all our firemen to take those jobs if they go over. And any other employee that works in our city will be offered jobs in these private companies that's brought in to do the work."
JIM RIGHEIMER IS A LIAR!
That final portion of his answer demonstrates, one more time, just how willing he is to play fast and loose with the truth. In fact, his last sentence is nothing more than a big, fat lie! Righeimer has no way of knowing if ANY current employees will be offered jobs to successful bidders for city operations or not. There have been NO final decisions about which, if any, current city functions would be outsourced. Even the Fire Department proposal is still far from a done deal. There have been no specifications created against which outsiders would bid. There have been no requirements for any current employees to be offered jobs. The exception, of course, is the proposal by the OCFA, which does include the transition of some, but not all, fire department personnel. And, Righeimer failed to mention that those current firefighters who do transition to the OCFA will all take a pay cut and have to contribute much larger percentages to their medical and pensions. The total hit to the average firefighter has been estimated to be from 15-19% - at least.
KEEP YOUR EYE ON THEM!
I know you're getting tired of me telling you this, but you simply cannot take your eyes off these guys for a single second! It's obvious that they will say anything necessary to get their way, including flat-out lies.