Local worker unions are clashing over a ballot initiative in Anaheim that would raise wages to $18 an hour for employees of companies that receive city subsidies, a measure aimed at three luxury hotel projects that received over $500 million in tax rebates in 2016.
At a city council meeting packed with union leaders and Disneyland Resort employees, Anaheim leaders discussed a recent survey that found many of the resort’s workers struggle to buy food, pay rent and afford other basic necessities. Critics say the union-funded report was commissioned to bolster an upcoming ballot initiative.
Anaheim City Council members are considering a “sunshine ordinance” that would restrict city officials and employees from influencing city decisions until two years after their employment ends, and require paid lobbyists to register with the city.
Changes approved by a split city council Tuesday are compromises that city staff say will lead to a settlement of a lawsuit, but they also could extend the time some rental owners were given to phase out their businesses.
Anaheim will scrap an existing fireworks program that Mayor Tom Tait says disproportionately benefits Anaheim Hills residents for a more limited program where only 16 nonprofits will participate each year.
Councilman Jose Moreno proposed the city beef up its Public Safety Board into an “investigative police commission” while councilwomen Kris Murray and Lucille Kring argued that the board should remain in its current form.
Supporters of a plan to slash City Manager Paul Emery’s signing authority on city contracts from $100,000 to $50,000 say it will increase accountability. But opponents said it shows a lack of faith in Emery and will bog down the city government.