Woes in El Monte

Wow. Things keep getting worse when it comes to the budget situation in El Monte.

Rebecca Kimitch reports that El Monte laid off 17 police officers, and it is still projecting a $2.5 million shortfall. Meantime, now city officials are considering placing an initiative to increase property taxes to support fire and paramedic services. Yes, this comes right after voters approve a half-cent sales tax.

As a side note, in a survey of 25 cities in the San Gabriel Valley, El Monte’s annual pension costs in 2007-08 was $12 million, which is the higest out of all cities surveyed. The next highest pension cost was in West Covina, which spent $9 million.

  • El Monte Resident

    Wow! El Monte is going down the toilet. NO we don’t want another tax added on. Why can’t that mayor and city council get it through their fat heads. Thanks to all that money that gave given to the El Monte Police, we the taxpayers are gonna get hit right between the eyes. What kind of BS is that? Why didn’t Emily Isigski do the right thing and Vote like the rest of the council. IF big mama plans to run for mayor she better grow some —–.Those tough decisions will make or break the mayorship. Turn the city over to the county. It is Our Only Salvation!!!

  • Another Resident loaded with “Taxes”

    In response to last comment, It was hard for Emily to make the right decision because her Son inlaw was one of them been laid off….But no need to worry she can help him with the $200,000.00 a year City Pension that she and her husband are taking every year…

  • Anonymous

    JM: Can you send a link to the pension survey of the 25 cities that was conducted?

  • Jennifer McLain

    It was a survey I conducted, and the database — which looks at retiree medical costs, pensions costs, unfunded retiree liabilities and unfunded pension liabilities — will be running with a story on Wednesday.

    The first story will be about the impact of retiree medical costs; a second story will run later about pension costs.

  • El Monte Resident

    I hope property owners attend the public hearing on Monday to tell Council that you dont agree with yet another tax to clean the mess they made. Why didnt they increase the sales tax so the costs are spread out evenly to the community? I dont have kids and are expected to pick up the tab for the school through excees property taxes. I encourage you to voice your opinion on Monday.

  • Gilman

    Jennifer….

    Great to hear that some coverage is coming out on the outrageous pension costs being born by local taxpayers….can’t wait to read.

  • Fed up tax payer

    ENOUGH WITH THE TAXES!!!!! City Council & City Manager are so out of touch with the community. They want EM residents to pay for things they do not have money or worse do not have a job to pay for. Its bad enough measure gg and the school bonds passed. Now they want to ad another ****** tax! Hopefully, new, better & qualified individuals replace EVERYONE on this council. Better yet, let the county take over.

    Listen up EM council no more taxes! we are all taxed out!
    Edison is trying to raise rates, water rates will be going up and now our stupid governor placed 5 tax proposals on ballot for may’s special election.

  • El Monte Resident

    Good thing that the El Monte City Administration is so incompentent that they missed the deadline to put the property tax measure on the May ballot.

  • Anonymous

    I don’t think you need to worry about the tax. Take a look at the March 23, 2009 agenda. The County decided not to extend their deadline for taxes futher.

  • Anonymous

    Jeniffer did you take into account the number of employees each city has?

    Did you take into account which types of pension plans different cities have?

    Did you control for the fact that some obligations might be higher depending on the financial performance of a plan in a given year?

    Hopefully you also mentioned that all new El Monte employees for a few years now already receive pension benefits that are considerably more scaled-down than the benefits given in the 1990′s and earlier.

  • another anonymous

    Yep…the new employees don’t get the wonderful pensions, but Councilwoman Ishagaki and her husband each collect a 100% pension from the city of El Monte. That’s not enough for her. Because she is handicapped, she wants to make sure that the handicapped don’t have to meet income requirements for tax breaks and services in the city. Since they get over $200,000 a year, they would never qualify for the reductions if there was an income qualification.

  • Anonymous

    Emily is not handicapped. She only uses her cane for sympathy. She has been without it since running for mayor. It is plain to see that she has already started to lie about her health. She never had cancer either, as she had everyone thinking. They were just tests that all women go through. Shame on her for doiing such stuff just to get sympathy votes. Gomez should run for mayor. He is the best one on the council.

  • Upset Resident

    I am so disgusted how our city has been run the last several years. We have the most ineffective council I have ever seen since I have live in the city. I’ve been a resident for over 40 years.

    I agree with “Fed up Tax Payer”, city hall administration is so out of touch wity our community!

    My question is how much are those employee’s making?
    City manager and his deputy city managers, finance director, redevelopment director, planning director.

    I for one will support a new slate of canidates who will promise change. Start by firing all those employee’s just mentioned!

    I call on all my fellow voters to reject any new taxes and support new canidates for city council come November.

    Lets’s vote those bums out of office who have done nothing for our city.

    We must clean house!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Anonymous

    Just to mention a few Pensions that we are paying to some employees already living like Kings while the average income in this City is $33,000.00 a year…

    Last Police Chief $200,000.00 a year pension
    before last Chief 160,000.00 a year pension
    previous Chief 170,000.00 a year pension

    Last City Manager 160,000.00 a year pension
    previous Manager 175,000.00 a year pension

    Emily and husband 200,000.00 a year pension
    parks Director 120,000.00 a year pension

    Do we need an audit to tell us were the money has been wasted or given away?

  • El Monte

    No wonder the city is broke. All these people need to get the royal boot out of city hall once and for all. If that were done maybe the city could be saved. Why are their pensions so high to begin with? This doesn’t sound legal. The District Attorney’s office should be contacted immediately. Cooley needs to know that El Monte is being roobed by the same people who control the purse strings. There’s something rotten at city hall.

  • Anonymous

    The City of El Monte hasn’t a chance of recovering. Once everyone that has a high pension cashes out the city will be in a deficit. The State will take over. No new sales tax will help El Monte. It is too far gone and heading for more problems.