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Perks and Pay in Redondo Beach

November 27, 1986

Here we go again, another episode of Redondo Beach's public servants serving themselves. The Redondo Beach City Council has recently approved a raise of $805 per month for the city clerk and city treasurer. The clerk and treasurer will now be paid a considerable $48,000 per year. Do you have any doubts that many educated, experienced, and competent individuals would be happy to perform the clerk's and treasurer's jobs for much less, ignoring the enviable pension officeholders are provided?

Just to keep the tax dollars flowing, Councilman Jack Chapman proposed that council members receive the same $270 monthly car allowance that is paid to the city clerk, city treasurer and city attorney. It seems to me that $270 per month is an overly generous amount that would cover the monthly payment on a car and a more-than-adequate amount of gasoline for mileage around Redondo Beach. What is going on here? I feel like I'm the one who is being taken for a ride, and the only gas I have is from political indigestion. How do you feel? Perhaps the next council proposal will be to have the city provide the monthly house payments for all elected officials.

I strongly suspect that economist James Buchanan's 1986 Nobel Prize-winning conclusion that politicians act in their own self-interest was reached via close observation of Redondo Beach's politicians.

I'm working on a theory that suggests that voters are often taken for fools. If my theory is correct, Redondo Beach and its voters are well positioned for the title, "Ship of Fools."

ROGER A. EVANS

Redondo Beach

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