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November 19, 2013 > Letter to Editor: Trip to India unnecessary

Letter to Editor: Trip to India unnecessary

Must citizens pay the cost of a 13-day, five-person, City Council junket to India?

Publicly elected officials are charged with providing services to citizens.
CA Constitution, Article 13, Sec 35(2). The protection of the public safety is the first responsibility of local government and local officials have an obligation to give priority to the provision of adequate public safety services.

If providing services to citizens creates an environment conducive to private or public job creation, that is an added plusÑbut NOT a goal unto itself.

Our City of Fremont fails to provide adequate services for its existing population:

á Does not provide city streets safe enough for children to walk to school.
á Fails to maintain our infrastructure so that replacement rather than upkeep is a factor.
á Personnel are not available to respond to calls reporting non-threatening crimes. Citizens are instructed to file a written report either on line or in person, especially regarding vehicles.
áCitizens are held responsible for sidewalk and street tree maintenance.
á CitizensÕ vehicle tires and shock absorbers are destroyed by streets filled with pot holes.
á High density homes are approved in areas without space available in the advertised Òexcellent schools nearbyÓ - financially stressing our citizen-funded school district.
á Although it seems citizens pay FremontÕs City Manager $5,000 per WEEK (yes, that is three zeros per week), he is not required to enforce our Fremont Municipal Code:
FMC 8.60.070 No duty to enforce Ð Exercise of discretion.
(a) Nothing provided in this chapter shall create any duty on the city to enforce any specific law or code section or abate any specific condition or circumstance which may exist. The city manager shall exercise sound prosecutorial discretion and shall maintain enforcement actions as resources permit.
(b) The timing, methods and priority of specific abatement actions shall be subject to the sole discretion of the city manager. (and)
FMC 8.55.090(c)Smoking: The city may, but is not obligated to, prepare and make publicly available signage called for by this chapter and may, but is not obligated to, post signs on city maintained sidewalks and other outdoor areas where smoking is prohibited under this chapter. The city manager shall have discretion to determine when to post signs.

Could not the money being allocated for this City Council junket be better spent right here in Fremont? Vice Mayor Natarajan and Councilmember Bacon, you could just say, ÒNo, I wonÕt go.Ó Is this trip really in the best interests of your constituents?

Faye McKay

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