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Gann's Pay Initiative

August 03, 1986

Your editorial is so out of touch with reality that it should be retracted.

Please note that there are thousands of highly educated and "highly qualified" (however one chooses to measure such a quality) people in California working for much less than $64,000 a year. How can it be "difficult to attract the most qualified people to government" when thousands of such people cannot find any work at all? Never mind $64,000 per year.

Right now there are thousands of American college graduates, some with postgraduate degrees, who want to live in California, but must work in Africa, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and other far-flung places around the world because there simply are not enough jobs for them at home.

The idea that the people who now hold high-level positions in state government are the most qualified people available at the current salary rates is ludicrous on its face. These employees are either appointed by politicians or hired by committees of their friends. Every faculty member, administrator, prosecutor, police and fire official, library and museum director, et al. could be replaced several times by equally qualified, or even better qualified people who now work for less money in the private sector.

California has the largest population and the fastest growth in the nation. Do you really believe that none of these people are "qualified," or willing to accept state positions for $64,000 a year? Or half that much? The unemployment line is too long to entertain such a naive fiction. Too many college graduates are selling shoes and flipping hamburgers for the minimum wage for that story to have credence.

THOMAS BRYAN

Canyon Country

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