Rebuttals to ballot arguments for and against Concord Measure Q sales tax increase

Following publication of the primary arguments for and against Concord’s 67% sales tax increase that will appear in the ballot statement, we post the respective REBUTTALS. The Pro Q side rebuts the Primary Argument Against and vice versa. Measure Q requires a simple majority to pass and will appear on the ballot November 2, 2010. See arguments below the break.


Vote Yes on Q to prevent even more severe cuts to the vital services we all need. Never believe confusing arguments. Opponents are using bad math and funny figures to scare you. The FACTS speak for themselves:

FACT: Concord has cut $18 million in essential City services.
FACT: Strict fiscal stewardship and cutting 25% of the workforce have balanced the budget. ALL Concord employees, including police, have taken significant salary and benefit cuts.
FACT: Additional cuts will be to the bone! Without Measure Q, Concord needs to cut $5 million more — including severe cuts to public safety, youth programs, street maintenance, and senior services.

Our community will LOSE:
– Downtown and school police officers
– Neighborhood patrols
– All crossing guards
– Youth after-school/summer programs
– Street/pothole repairs
– Senior nutrition services

Measure Q means the community monitors City finances with independent oversight, mandatory audits, and yearly reports ensuring all Measure Q money goes directly to local services.

Measure Q is just ½ a penny — a bargain to support local critical services! It’s not levied on food/medicine and expires in 5 years.

Unfortunately, Sacramento has used Concord to fund their bail-out, taking $33 million over ten years to deal with the State deficit! We can’t afford to pay for the State’s problems.

Yes on Q will give Concord local control over local funds for local needs and provides protected, reliable revenue to prevent cuts.

We need Measure Q to maintain our community and safety – Vote Yes on Q.

The Pro Q rebuttal was signed by: Beri Kasper, CPA, Concord Police Association, Thomas Wentling, Todos Santos Business Association, and Concord Councilmember Bill Shinn.


Defeat Measure Q

Proponents of Measure Q can only sell their sales tax increase by misleading voters and promoting scare tactics.

They say, “Sacramento took our money!” But the City Manager and Mayor have denied this claim. Yet, proponents still blame Sacramento while ignoring City Council’s lack of financial discipline and independence from special interests.

Council, not Sacramento, is responsible for recent promises of no-layoffs, back-door 3% wage increases for the highest paid, and millions in unfunded pension and healthcare liabilities.

Instead of cutting spending, Council made sure Measure Q cannot be rescinded, even if the economy improves. Meanwhile, Council hands out $90,000 going away gifts and subsidizes a golf course while cutting neighborhood policing.

Council is responsible for labor costs that dominate the City budget (70%+). 154 employees take more than $100,000, plus generous benefits. Despite Council claims of deep cuts, these unsustainable costs remain virtually untouched!

Instead of reducing bureaucracy, Council holds hostage programs for seniors, recreation, and youth, unless a tax increase is passed. Given its record—like Bell, CA—Council is more likely to fund government salaries, benefits, and pensions, instead of services for the poor and elderly, who will be hit hardest by this tax.

A tax increase means more lost jobs and foreclosures, while illustrating Council’s feckless leadership. Instead of raising taxes, City Council must make the necessary cuts to balance the budget instead of asking voters to bail out special interests.

Defeat Measure Q

The rebuttal to the argument for Measure Q was signed by: Keith McMahon, Richard Colman, Richard Eber, Bill Gram-Reefer, and Richard Soderholm

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  1. FPNATALE says

    WOW….. when will the city start acting like managment instead of of populartiy contestants. We in the private sector have had to take 30% salary cuts, droped health insurance, lost retirements, so then why hasn’t city employees haven’t had to take the same. I just came back from visting a nice area of the NJ Shore, where sales tax is 7%, the Fire Department, and County Sherifes are voluntary positions. Garbage is picked up twice a week with no limit or type of items. And the property tax is the same as that of Concord. When I make mention to City Management, their only statement is why don’t you move there. Well, I have lived in Concord for 30 years now, but I have not met anyone who has relocated to California in the last 10 years from the east coast. I have only met more illegals coming to Concord consuming up all the services that we pay for. City of Concord needs to go Bank Rupt to get a new start, equal to that of the private sector.

  2. Tom Hilton says

    You have to be nuts to vote more money to the politicians in Concord and their tools in both parties.

  3. Profile photo of rootvg says

    BGR, you’re baiting me.

    I know where you’re from. You know as well as I do that to expect middle class people to afford the living costs in the Bay Area or some of the various metro areas around the country like it (Boston, burbs of DC and Raleigh, etc) is complete and total folly. People in Ohio and Pennsylvania don’t borrow on their homes for living expenses but until very recently most Californians did because they had to and it can’t continue. The cost of living keeps going up here and you know perfectly well that to expect the uneducated and undereducated horde coming in from Mexico to match that level of attainment is just too much at least for the first one or two generations.

    A former flight instructor and I got into this conversation on a training flight and he’s concerned enough to consider taking his family back to Wales. Everything I see happening here is based on the accomplishments of the Baby Boom generation. I walked into Whole Foods the other evening and heard Del Shannon and Jimmy Clanton being played on the overhead. The hair on the back of my neck stood straight up because I knew what that meant. Why don’t you?

  4. says

    Rootvg just espoused the basic ideas of Oswald Spengler, who, in Germany during the 1930s, wrote of the horde of invading lesser races (“types”: asian, semites, coloreds (sic) etc.) encircling corrupt and decadent white western culture, which in desperate siege mode experiences during its decline a fretful twilight before it is overrun.

    You are right to point out though: Demographics is destiny.

    But I question the implicit assertion that only rich white folks and their scion are the sole carriers of a rational, just, and neighbor-loving worldview.

    Apparently, in your view, some of our neighbors are more worthy of our respect than others, as if “your kind” alone bear the image of God.

    In your theoretical gulag, who’s next in line for the showers? Jews? Gays? Asians? Calvinists?

    Don’t forget, the high birthrates of new immigrants in the U.S. will be a driving factor in maintaining U.S. economic leadership as birthrates decline elsewhere.

  5. Profile photo of rootvg says

    Beg your pardon, but what it comes down to is more white people having kids and that’s a little difficult when all the houses in this area are half a million dollars and up.

    That’s also why the people who seem to make all the decisions here have that authority. They’ve lived here for years or their descendants lived here or they’re elitist highly over educated homosexuals or otherwise plugged into the power structure in Sacramento.

  6. Profile photo of rootvg says

    Agreed, but until you find a way to reverse the overall demographic trends we see here (ongoing immigration from developing nations with socialist or otherwise dysfunctional political traditions) nothing will change. It’ll just continue no matter how loudly we scream. There aren’t enough conservative native born whites remaining.

    • says

      That’s why people with better ideas need to build a broader based movement across ethnic and socio-economic lines rather than the sterile, rationalistic elitism that dominates the so-called “conservative” Republican Party.

  7. Richard S. Colman says

    Dull and unimaginative policies are being used by the the Concord City Council. The Council claims that Concord is broke. Nonsense! The Council has put a tax-increase measure on the November ballot. Voters must say: “NO MORE TAXES.” If the Council had any courage, it would have done what is being planned for Oakland’s Chinatown. Chinatown, in the wake of Oakland’s layoffs of city police, is looking into hiring private security guards (New York Times, Aug. 13, 2010).

    Richard S. Colman
    Biomed Inc.
    Concord, CA
    Aug. 16, 2010