Letters: S.J. contract | Deserves commendation | Wasteful spending | Informed voters | Planned obsolescence | Ungovernable GOP

Letters: S.J. contract | Deserves commendation | Wasteful spending | Informed voters | Planned obsolescence | Ungovernable GOP

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Small tax hike could
pay for S.J. contract

San Jose’s recent union contract will greatly raise city costs, and union contracts will soon come for the police and fire departments.

Costs will surpass revenues now collected so jobs will soon be eliminated. And maybe that will work, a tiny bit, as San Jose has many job positions unfilled for long periods of time.

But, our cops have to work a lot of overtime, which greatly adds to costs. So we need to add more cops.

I propose we vote for a sales tax increase of 1/4 to 3/8 percent, to be used to fund these higher rates of pay, but also to be used to hire more police, not for anything else.

Most taxpayers in our city can afford it and it yields a safer city with a solid workforce. If you agree, email your City Councilmember.

Brian McCormick
San Jose

Resident deserves
commendation, not fine

Re: “Officials eye fine for tarp removal” (Page A1, Sept. 19).

I am utterly dismayed at the news that a proactive community member, Jim Salata, who helped secure one of our beautiful historic buildings may be punished. How can this be?

Please consider: There was no “protection” on this historic building (the “tarp” was in tatters). The city has had no luck getting the current owner to take action to secure the beautiful, historic building nor to respond to the city’s outreach. The action taken by Salata was careful, prudent and may very well save this treasured structure.

The city is considering a fine? For what? Taking appropriate steps to help preserve a historic structure? Removing blight that our community has endured for years? Refraining from grandstanding, making useless proclamations to the press and instead stepping up and getting the work done?

Really, what salata deserves is a commendation for being an outstanding, caring and proactive community member.

Tina Morrill
San Jose

PG&E’s ad campaign
is wasteful spending

Re: “PG&E customers facing big bill increases” (Page B1, Sept. 15).

Who is paying for PG&E’s endless commercials about underground cabling? Who is, if not eventually us subscribers? It can’t be cheap, and what’s the purpose?

We get it, so bury the cables instead of just talking endlessly about it. These have been running for over a year, on multiple TV channels, over and over again daily. They finally faced out their “new CEO” on her self-promoting journey, which was badly overdue in itself, but why keep running the rest?

Instead, they could have included a message with the bill, that a video is available online, in case anyone was interested.

Who approved this costly, annoying nonsense? I have written the PUC, without any response.

Jorg Aadahl
San Mateo

Local media, informed
voters matter for election

Re: “Elections count, even in Sunol school district” (Page A6, Sept. 14).

Elections are indeed important, whether for U.S. president or for the local school board. It is essential that every voter learn about candidates and vote for those who best represent that voter’s interests.

Local journalism has an essential role. Every candidate’s views should be reported in detail. Reporters should ask probing questions and follow-ups that reveal the truth of the candidate’s positions. Candidates should not be allowed to get away with meaningless goals like “children should feel safe at school” or with platitudes like “I want every child to thrive.” How? What specific actions would you take? Have those ideas been effective in other places? What would be the downside of this plan? Keep asking, then report. Local journalism is one of the most important tools of democracy.

Then, voters: read, think, make up your own mind. Every elected office is important.

Christine Martens
Portola Valley

Planned obsolescence
is unfair to consumers

Re: “Premature ‘death’ of Chromebooks to be thing of past” (Page A1, Sept. 20).

Regarding your recent article about the premature “death” of Chromebooks, Google isn’t the only company that utilizes planned obsolescence.

Not long ago I had an HP printer that worked perfectly, but I had to discard it because HP no longer supplied ink for it. Consequently, I was forced to buy a new printer.

Also, I currently have a Toshiba laptop that I love. I have had it for over 10 years, and it works perfectly. Its operating system is Windows 7, but Microsoft no longer supports Microsoft Securing Essentials for Windows 7, which means that I’ll need to buy a new laptop.

I think that the planned obsolescence by these companies is unfair to consumers.

Lisa Van Valkenburgh

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McCarthy is stuck with
ungovernable caucus

Regarding the current internecine warfare in the GOP, for once I sympathize with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, who is accused of being weak and unable to control his House majority.

No one could succeed at that job; there is no middle ground in the divide between the Republicans who put party above country and those who put Donald Trump above country.

Robert Mitchell
Morgan Hill