The new contract raises the base salary for officers and sergeants by 5.6 percent to 10.6 percent, depending on seniority and work schedule. Supporters say it’s needed to keep compensation competitive, while opponents say Santa Ana can’t afford the increase.
If the deficits continue and the city has to draw from rainy day funds, it could be pushed to the brink of bankruptcy a few years from now. City officials say they’re working hard to find ways to save costs and grow revenues.
The decision came on a 4-3 vote just as Mouet was preparing to announce his process for choosing an acting police chief, following Chief Carlos Rojas’ announcement last week that he’s leaving the city for a different police chief job.
Most of the City Council supports a discussion about new oversight, including the possible creation of a civilian review panel that would examine police use-of-force incidents. The city paid more than $8 million last year to settle police shooting lawsuits.
Following the ouster of City Manager David Cavazos, expect changes in how the police department is managed, budget dollars are allocated, and the kind of leader the city will have atop its bureaucracy.
Hopes that Santa Ana would give voters a chance to transform the city’s electoral systems were dealt a blow this week when the City Council voted down a proposal. But activists signaled that they would take up the cause.