Filner signals he’ll block further reform in San Diego

Dec. 11, 2012

By Chris Reed

SAN DIEGO — As I wrote for CalWatchdog just after last month’s election, there was a strong chance that successful reforms with a heavy libertarian flavor were going to be blocked going forward here in California’s second-largest city with the election of paleoliberal Bob Filner.

This weekend, Filner made it all but official, expressing skepticism about continuing with managed competition, a hybrid form of outsourcing in which units of existing government workers compete against private providers in bidding for the right to provide city services. This came with the city poised to make its biggest savings yet on bidding for trash collection, notoriously bloated when handled by a government.

The twist is that Filner is opposed by a fellow liberal, newly installed City Council President Todd Gloria, who likes the money that managed comp frees up for the city’s many other needs.

An additional twist is that government worker units, which are given a 10 percent bidding edge, have won all five of the competitions so far.

Here’s a comprehensive U-T San Diego story from Sunday laying out how managed comp works and the Filner-Gloria divide.

Here’s an editorial imploring Filner not to sabotage a government success story.

Here’s the other Filner angle that everyone is watching for. So far, he hasn’t come close to blowing a gasket. But it is what people expect to happen, given his history.



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