San Luis Obispo unions call economic study biased

January 22, 2011

San Luis Obispo’s firefighter and police union are discounting recent cost saving recommendations because they claim the proposals are biased towards the business community. [Tribune]

City Manager Katie Lichtig personally selected the 32 Financial Sustainability Task Force members.  The task force recommendations included cutting staffing costs and eliminating binding arbitration.

City fire and police unions are opposed to changes in binding arbitration or to their pension plans.

Union leaders contend the facilitator of the task force, Michael Gunther, is connected to the San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce and biased in a pro-business direction that includes providing more public funds for private businesses. In addition, union leaders claim that the 32-person task force was laden with members of the business community, management officials and former chamber members.

According to the Tribune, the task force was made up of  40 percent from the business community, 15 percent non-profits employees, 28 percent city employees and the remainder a mix of people affiliated with community organizations or Cal Poly.

In San Luis Obispo County, local government employees account for approximately 13 percent of the work force, according to data recently released by the state Employment Development Department.

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Ha, and unions aren’t biased! As far as I’m concerned, unions should have no say at all in these negotiations. No one who has a personal financial stake (other than as a taxpayer) in how these negotiations are conducted should be allowed to participate. I think the board should consist of local citizens who are not employed or contracted by gov, like I said, they should have no financial interest other than that they are a taxpayer. Otherwise, it’s on whole, nothing but a biased charade.

Katie Lichtig should have moderated that committee. $10,000 to hire a moderator was a waste of city money. Apparently, she will be the type of manager that hires all of her work to be done. Ask her for a report and she will hire someone to do it. In that way, she avoids all responsibility for decisions, and SLO will see city money depleted so fast it will make your head spin.

First, the elaborate funeral for the fire chief, now the suspect committee report. The City Council will have to put her feet to the fire and make her do her own work. What a disaster.

At least she isn’t paying the chief of police $126k to “resign” and give him a glowing letter of recommendation. She only spent $10k.

Ha!! KATIE LICHTIG gets $166,125 if she’s forced to quit…

PLUS 9 mos. benefits.

PLUS her contract prohibits her pay from being lowered by the countil.

PLUS she gets a free $125,000 loan from the city.

PLUS she gets “relocation expense” ($2,500 per month house rental)–she still doesn’t live here.

PLUS she gets free travel junkets and posh hotel rooms for “professional development”


Google “katie lichtig contract”

slorider…..her contrat is a very interesting read. Thanks for the tip.

I wonder who was on her hiring panel?????

Regarding Lichtig moderating the meeting: you have put her in an unfair no-win situation.

If she moderated it, she’s bad because you don’t like the findings/protocol/whatever. If she calls in a pro moderator, she’s bad because she is shirking/spending/whatever.

I believe the crybaby union bosses had seats at the table, but gave them up because they felt the numbers were not skewed enough in their favor.

Great. Just another example of what a mistake it was to hire Katie Lichtig. How dumb does she think the citizens are?