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LA County vs. LA Sheriff Deputies

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Remember Measure A? The one that would have raised taxes to hire more law enforcement officers in LA County? The one that Sheriff Lee Baca pushed hard for, warning of a crime apocalypse on city streets if the proposition failed?

Turns out that Measure A may have been nothing more than an attempt by the County to stave off a bitter battle with its law enforcement officers over wage and pension issues. The Association of Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs has been demanding an additional $48 million a year in pension contributions from the County, accusing officials of sitting on a $2 billion surplus.

The County is crying poor, as can be expected from a government which is straining to keep its health care system from collapsing on top of its poorest citizens.

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The deputies are seemingly unconcerned with keeping the County's emergency rooms open. They want to be able to retire at 50 with 90% of their pay, and they're threatening more job actions if their demands are not met.

Now, LAist is all for unions, which have played an important role in gaining many of the protections that all American workers now enjoy. But unions are not altruistic. They try to stick it to the Man on behalf of their members, regardless of who gets hurt. And that's fine, that's what they should do.

But, hopefully, the County will stand firm and refuse to be bullied into making sick poor people pay for LA County Deputies to retire early and move to a nice little retirement home in Idaho.