Paid strong

Getting freaky?

Getting freaky?

Well, our new Sacramento city manager is not a stupid man.

According to the report posted on the city’s website on Monday, John Shirey will make about $43,000 a year more than his predecessors Gus Vina and Ray Kerridge.

Shirey’s also got a provision in his contract that pays him six months severance if he’s fired by the city council “without cause.” (It takes six votes to fire the city manager.) If things get freaky—and you know they do get freaky sometimes—and Shirey needs to bail, he gives up his severance pay.

But if things get really really freaky, and the city council puts Mayor Kevin Johnson’s “strong mayor initiative” on the ballot, and—freakier still—it somehow is approved by voters, then Shirey’s contract spells out that he’s allowed to walk away with the cash.

The escape-from-strong-mayor clause is troubling to some City Hall watchers. But it’s probably fair to say that the strong-mayor proposal is the real destabilizing influence here. That’s because it’s pretty clear Shirey would be toast, anyway, if strong mayor were to pass. Johnson was the only one on the council to vote against his hire.

Team K.J. says that the mayor’s “no” vote had nothing to do with disagreements over strong mayor. I didn’t particularly believe that before. I really don’t believe it seeing the escape-from-strong-mayor clause in Shirey’s contract.

Compiled from Snog.

On the books

We’ve got an education problem, but it isn’t Senate Bill 48.

Any time a change to the state’s education mandate is proposed, it’s controversial. There are folks out there who are disturbed that we’re not still using “Dick and Jane” readers. But what most people don’t understand about recently-signed-into-law S.B. 48, or the Fair, Accurate, Inclusive and Respectful (FAIR) Education Act, is that it’s not much of a change.

As Rebecca Rosa, a UC Davis education professor, told me, the bill simply makes it specific that the historical, cultural and social contributions of LGBT, Pacific Islanders and disabled people are to be included in textbooks and instruction.

The big surprise? “What people don’t realize is that this is not very far from what it already says in the curriculum,” Rosa said.

The education frameworks adopted in 1997—and the curriculum standards that were updated in 2001—already mandate teaching the contributions made to society by women and groups that have been historically marginalized and discriminated against, she told me.

That means gay people. It’s already in the law, and has been for a decade.

Compiled from Kel’s Hot Flash.