In the private sector, the bottom line is the bottom line. In the public sector, it's common to hear officials complain about a lack of money even as they spend more money on unjustifiable expenses. As the Daily News explained, "Los Angeles Department of Water and Power General Manager Ron Nichols made his pitch Tuesday for power and water rate increases to keep up with legislative mandates and upgrade aging infrastructure." Yes, it's important to fund infrastructure improvements. But keep in mind this recent Los Angeles Times story:
The right hand giveth, and the left taketh away
"Facing new pressures on its pension system, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power says it can no longer cover much of the retirement cost for the employees it has hired away from other city agencies." I recall a conversation with a fire union leader who told me that the department needed a fourth person on a fire truck. I said that if they hadn't spent so much money on pensions, they would have the money for additional personnel. He said that those are different budget items. Welcome to the public sector.
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