Councilmember Randall Stone looks on as Councilmember Tami Ritter answers a question at the Chico Chamber of Commerce Candidates Forum held at the CARD Center on Wednesday, September 7th, 2016.

Councilmember Randall Stone looks on as Councilmember Tami Ritter answers a question at the Chico Chamber of Commerce Candidates Forum held at the CARD Center on Wednesday, September 7th, 2016.  Photo by Bill Husa / ChicoER.com

Councilmember Randall Stone “fact checked” and challenged the assertion by other candidates that Stone was not the single greatest catalyst to fiscal solvency, pension reform, and budget accountability.  As one constituent retorted, “The financial turnaround at the City of Chico in all likelihood would not have occurred at all if not for Councilmember Randall Stone and his leadership on the budget and pension reform.”

Randall Stone’s 2012 campaign for Council’s central push was for “pension reform and budget accountability” specifically referencing the requirement that costs continue to rise under the current system of salaries and benefits.  Stone fought aggressively for all bargaining groups to pay their full CalPERS recommended pension payments (instead of requiring the City to make those full pension payments for the employees – in contrast to the pensioner’s insistence that employees pay 8-9% of salary towards pensions).  Stone also fought for rollbacks in employee compensation and benefits.  This resulted in the rollback of $4 million in General Fund expenses (on a $43 million General Fund budget – an unprecedented concession made possible by Stone’s efforts).

As is now clear to those in attendance at the Chamber Candidates Forum, all of the financial and safety policy changes occurred in 2013 and prior to July 2014 – with Stone spearheading the fiscal changes.

These included:

  • Employee Salary & Benefit Concessions – March 2014
  • Budget Reform and Accountability – June 2013 and June 2014
  • Police Staffing Plan Approval and Funding – June 2014
  • All Employee Groups Paying Full CalPERS Recommended Payments – March 2014
  • Alternative Custody Supervison to keep Caper Acres Open and augment park services (Councilmember Stone’s proposal and effort) – November 2013