Everyone knew it was coming.
Television and radio ads hit the airwaves today and a brochure landed in mailboxes in the past few days. (See all three below.)
All contain the same theme: Wilson cannot call himself a fiscal conservative at the same time he supports paying San Ramon City Manager Herb Moniz the highest city manager salary in California.
Moniz earned $356,000, the top pay in the state, according to the League of California Cities’ salary compensation study. (Three other city managers collected more money in 2009 but after one-time retirement payments were subtracted, Moniz remained was No. 1.)
The issue could seriously damage Wilson’s chances of victory on Nov. 2. Voters of all political stripes are angry over the scandal in Bell, where the city manager earned in excess of $800,000 and he and several city councilmembers were indicted on charges of stealing public money.
Wilson has consistently supported Moniz’ salary. He correctly notes that Moniz’ pay figure includes the cost of health insurance when other cities did not report the figure as part of their top managers’ salary. (This is requires clarification, however. San Ramon does not provide Moniz health insurance but the city boosted his salary about $20,000, the value of that insurance.)
Wilson also says that San Ramon is an exceedingly well-run city and Moniz does the job without a bevy of assistant city managers found in other communities.
“It’s pay for performance,” Wilson said during a recent interview. “Show me a better-run city in California or the U.S. Look at all the awards we have received … We pay in this society for performance. Look at athletes. Look at executives.”
Wilson continued to say, “You can pay less and have to fear for your life when you have to talk out your door or you can not have the amenities. But what good is that? It’s quality of life. We don’t have that in California. But we do have that in San Ramon.”
Click here to listen to the radio ad:
Watch the video below: