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Mailbag: Join the grass-roots effort to stop the charter

February 27, 2012

There is a true grass-roots movement to oppose the proposed city charter by just-plain Costa Mesa folk who may want a charter but resent the way this one is being processed.

It is truly a David vs. Goliath battle about principles over politics in Costa Mesa.

Republicans, Democrats, liberals, conservatives, independents — you name them — Costa Mesans of all stripes are waking up.

It's a good thing, really.

Neighbors are talking, we're making new friends with people who used to be ideological foes, we're talking about what we want the Costa Mesa of tomorrow to look like, and what we will be willing to pay for the services we have come to expect and truly enjoy as Costa Mesans.

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Also, we're tired of the council majority bashing the employees, past councils and a former city manager who have helped to make Costa Mesa a great, safe and clean city.

Costa Mesa has made progress in pension reform, but the majority doesn't want to talk about the savings because it's never enough for their campaign against the unions.

When I compare Costa Mesa to the formulas used by other Orange County cities, we are definitely a leader in that our employees agreed to pay more in 2010.

But even though we realized $3.5 million in savings, the new formula may impact our ability to recruit the best employees. Why would people want to work for Costa Mesa if they can get a better deal elsewhere?

We have to count the unseen and future costs of this ground zero pension reform battle in Costa Mesa.

The people of Costa Mesa are fiercely independent and intelligent. Many are insulted by the way the council majority has been moving recklessly this past year.

It will be a good fight to control the future of a great city!

Wendy Leece

Costa Mesa

(Editor's note: Leece is a Costa Mesa City Council member.)

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Catholics, birth control and Obama

Sometimes a question can best be answered by first asking: What if? In the flap over the Catholic church being required to carry insurance that covers birth control, in the institutions they own outside of the church itself, ask this question: What if you substituted Muslim for Catholic?

Would we be hearing a single peep out of the right wing about religious freedom? I think not!

I will even go so far as to postulate that if the Muslims were asking for the same exemption that the Catholic church is asking for, there would be an outcry from the religious right against it.

Oh yes, and President Obama would be castigated if he tried to cut them any slack, as he has tried to do for the Catholics.

Frank Colver

Newport Beach

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