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EDITORIAL: Madera Mayor Speaks Out on City Compensation & Truthful Transparency

EDITORIAL - Rather than perpetuating a story in search of a scandal, let's take a moment and discuss employee compensation and of course, look at the facts. I cannot speak to the intent behind the recent editorials in the Madera Tribune, but many people have expressed legitimate concerns regarding employee compensation which lend fair questions.  The public absolutely deserves to know how their money is being spent. Employee compensation is public information that is a part of the policy process and requires review.  Madera's employee compensation information, along with all other California cities, is published and made available to the public every year.

During the recession our city squeezed and stretched every dollar we could; we did more with less and still provided the best service delivery for Madera.  The effects of the recession were devastating to a large number of residents and homeowners in Madera and City Hall was no different.  The City strategically absorbed retirements and open positions and redistributed work amongst remaining employees.  All departments cut their operating budgets and employees took cuts to their compensation.  During this difficult economic time, while other public entities in California were filing for bankruptcy, I am proud to say that the City of Madera had no layoffs to any of its employees and fared much better than most cities around the State.  During the recession, we grew our monetary reserves to insure continuity of the services our citizens expect.

EDITORIAL: These Days Political Difference Rarely Met with Civil Discours

EDITORIAL- Has hate become the response emotion toward everyone we disagree with or those who may be different than us? Unfortunately for many people, the answer is yes.

Political difference is rarely met with civil discourse these days; it is polarized with contempt, name calling, rhetoric, verbal assault, threats and sometimes violence; in elicit attempts to shut up, drive out, and remove opponents. Serious terms are often hurled in an attempt to silence an opponent; racist, sexist, intolerant.

Madera County Supervisor takes water war to D.C.

EDITORIAL - During the annual legislative conference in Washington D.C., Madera County Supervisor David Rogers let lawmakers and supervisors from across the nation know he means business when it comes to fighting for water storage.

“There is no water shortage,” Rogers said when addressing attendees of the National Association of Counties (NACo) this week. “There is a shortage of water storage, and certainly a shortage of common sense water policy.

EDITORIAL: The California Budget: Short-Changing Rural Counties, Again

EDITORIAL - The majority party recently enacted the largest budget in California state history. I truly hoped leadership would craft a fiscally prudent measure, prioritizing money for rural California. Unfortunately, that did not happen. Once again, the urban agenda wins, ignoring the critical issues affecting my rural district. Sacramento has increased spending significantly, and continues to bolster a government unable to address a number of crucial problems our state is facing. Furthermore, the majority party has used the budget process to force through several non-fiscal policies without the public’s ability to provide comment.

Unfortunately, these policies are not for the betterment of California. Many folks from the rural corners of our state have tremendous concerns that should be addressed. One of which is Tree mortality. While rural communities will bear the brunt of this critical issue, the problem as a whole will have a lasting effect on our entire state until we find a solution. There are approximately 102 million dead and dying trees in California, which is an unparalleled disaster facing our forests. Exacerbated by the drought and significant rainfall from last winter, these dead trees littering the forest floor provide the perfect kindling for a catastrophic wildfire - endangering life and property. While it seems difficult to imagine ignoring this frightening reality facing our state, those in charge of funding such matters have seemed to turn a blind eye.

Farinelli's Farewell to Madera County: Why You Should Always Vote in All Elections

EDITORIAL - I am not a politician, I am a public servant. That is why I am writing this warning to those who think it’s acceptable to sit out an election.
For months now I fought a hard campaign against a polished politician that ran an unethical campaign which I refused to partake in.

My opponent’s campaign team, made up of a well-known dirty campaign manager, a media gadfly and muckraker, and unethical family members, ran one of the dirtiest campaigns in Madera County history. This actually backfired on him and his committee.


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