In a story published by the San Francisco Chronicle on August 10, and republished widely (including by the Wall Street Journal), it was reported that there was an agreement reached by OPOA under which the union members would pay more into their pensions, and accept a later retirement for new hires, if the $360 parcel tax is passed in November. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2010/08/10/BABM1ERE21.DTL&feed=rss.crime
The story goes on to say that “if voters pass the ballot measure, the City Council has agreed to lay off no officers for three years.” The same news was reported elsewhere, on the KTVU website. http://www.ktvu.com/news/24570454/detail.html
In any event, I was very curious to see the agreement between OPOA and the City with this “no layoff” provision. So I did a public records request. For once, I got a timely response. And guess what? There is no agreement! It does not exist!
I’m not sure who to fault here. Was OPOA lying? Or did the City really make such a promise, and OPOA was so incredibly naïve that they never asked for it in writing? Or did the press just get it wrong? In any event, the real message here is: DON’T VOTE FOR THIS TAX! Apparently OPOA (and maybe the City) want you to believe that if you pass it, there won’t be more layoffs. It is a LIE! There is no agreement.
Postscript 10/14/10: Matthai Kuruvila provided me with two versions of the agreement - one signed by OPOA; one signed by the City. They are dated July 26 and 27, 2010. It is not unusual for an agreement to be executed in counterparts. What this means is that I asked for responsive documents, which the City must have had in its possession, and they were not provided! So in fact, there was an agreement, but the City failed to provide it - leading me to believe that no agreement existed. Yet another blatant violation of the Public Records Act.