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Measure M will save four police officer jobs
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The half cent sales tax you pay each time you make a retail transaction in Manteca will prevent the city from losing four police officers.

The Measure M sales tax currently generates $4.1 million a year to pay the salaries and benefits of 11 police officers as well as $3.2 million for the benefits and salaries of 12 firefighters.

At the same time a federal grant that allowed Manteca to hire back four of the original 16 officers that the city had to lay off over two years ago due to budget constraints runs out in 2012. That grant requires the four positions to be kept by the city.

Manteca plans to collapse the salaries and benefits of those four officers into the Measure M funding. That would bring Measure M funded police officers to 15.

The original plan when Measure M was passed was to have 15 police officers and 15 firefighters paid for with Measure M receipts by June 2010. The recession, however, slammed retail sales and slowed revenue. And while current year tax receipts are running 7 percent ahead of last fiscal year’s they are still below the original projections outlined in the Measure M plan.

Public Safety Sales Tax Oversight Committee Chairman Rich Silverman told the council Tuesday after they received their annual report that “Measure M is doing what it is supposed to do.”

Other citizens on the committee are Marion Elliott, Mike Morwit, JoAnn Jamerson, and Dave Thompson.