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The following commentary was submitted by supporters of Yes on Measure Y.
Mayor Andy Weissman and Councilmember Jim Clarke finished their citywide tour by sitting down with residents of Raintree to discuss Measure Y.
Measure Y, the half-cent City sales tax to maintain essential Culver City services such as 911 emergency responses, paramedics, police and fire protection, as well as funding for sidewalk and street repairs, parks, senior and after-school programs, is on the Nov. 6 ballot for Culver City residents.
Emergency response from Culver City fire and police departments is critical to the community. Over the past three years, the fire department responded to over 4400 emergency calls. The average response time, including travel, was less than five minutes.
Emergency 911 responses from the police department averaged three minutes. Where health or security is at stake, response is everything. Compare Culver City with Los Angeles City and County. According to the Los Angeles Department of Transportation:
Los Angeles' city and county fire agencies agreed in 1979 to link their dispatching operations to save lives and cut costs. But a [Los Angeles] Times analysis of more than 1 million LAFD responses over the last five years shows the agency rarely reaches across jurisdictional lines for county help. One result: 911 callers within a quarter mile of the city border are nearly 50 percent more likely to wait more than 10 minutes for rescue crews to arrive. According to national standards embraced by the LAFD, firefighters are supposed to arrive in under six minutes to almost all medical emergencies.
“Measure Y is absolutely the most important item on the November ballot,” said Mayor Andy Weissman. “Maintaining the quality of life we enjoy in Culver City is precisely what Measure Y is all about. Culver City is at a critical juncture. Despite reducing City payroll, expenses, pensions and benefits, unless City revenues are increased, the City Council will need to make further significant cuts to public safety and other essential city services. Voting yes on Measure Y will help us maintain current staffing levels, help us to maintain Culver City’s stellar 911 response times and save lives."
If passed, Measure Y will generate approximately $8 million annually – with the majority of revenue coming from non-residents shopping and dining in Culver City. This $8 million annual revenue will help solve the City’s fiscal emergency, help protect and maintain police and fire services, park and recreation programs, and street and sidewalk maintenance.
More information on Measure Y is available at http://www.yesonY.com or click on this Patch article.