Lafayette City Council To Discuss Giving Holiday Bonuses To Food Bank

November 23, 2020 14:00 pm · 11 comments

Some money that, under different circumstances, would have gone to City of Lafayette employee holiday bonuses may now go to the Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano, if the Lafayette City Council on Monday follows city staff recommendation.

City Manager Niroop Srivatsa is recommending the council approve a $5,000 donation to the Concord-based food bank.

“The (COVID-19) pandemic has had a significant impact on businesses and our community,” Srivatsa said in a city report. “While our General Fund has not taken as bad of a hit as we had projected in June, there are no signs that the local economy will get back to normal.

“Therefore, in lieu of bonuses and as a gesture from city staff to those who are feeling the impacts of COVID-19, I recommend that the City Council authorize me to donate the $5,000 set aside for staff’s holiday party
to the Contra Cost Food Bank,” Srivatsa said.

iKrissy November 23, 2020 at 2:11 PM

I’m confused. Is the money coming from what would have been used for the holiday party? Or from what would be bonuses to the staff? If I was staff I’d like to have a decision in where my supposed bonus monies go… I would certainly go without the Holiday Party…..

Jeff November 23, 2020 at 3:15 PM

The City Council puts aside $5K for a holiday party? Is that money collected from selling cookies, or does that come from the Lafayette general (taxpayer) fund? It appears the loose management of tax payer money (if that be the case) starts at the local level, and just gets worse and more obscene as the level of government increases.

Shoulda Coulda November 23, 2020 at 8:52 PM

Jeff-

I know that Walnut Creek City employees have
been donating to the Food Bank for over 20 years.
They make it a competition to see which
department can donate the most. Their average
yearly gift totals between $6,000 and $12,000.
There is one VERY big hearted police reserve
officer who gives about $1,000 each year. The
police department usually wins the competition
as the most generous group. Walnut Creek City
employees do not get Christmas bonuses.

Jeff November 24, 2020 at 7:34 PM

Shoulda Coulda
That is nice to hear, and I have no doubts. I work/volunteer with a number of people who help or have helped with the local food banks. I am heartened to see there are many people who do volunteer, and help.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.

Kirkwood November 23, 2020 at 3:28 PM

I don’t remember how the City of Concord handled funding their Christmas party, but I do know that it was an evening, dress up affair. The hourly workers were on their own nickel.

Kentucky Derby November 23, 2020 at 4:14 PM

They’re obviously not having the Christmas party, so no matter where the money is coming from — I’d rather it go to the food bank than employee bonuses. I think it’s a nice gesture, and I hope it’s approved.

Chuq November 23, 2020 at 5:05 PM

Very generous of them. I imagine food banks need all the help they can get this year.

Antler November 23, 2020 at 5:30 PM

What an incredibly kind thing for them to do!

Gittyup November 23, 2020 at 5:48 PM

$5,000 sounds like a pretty extravagant holiday party. Is that taxpayer money? Anyplace I ever worked, we paid for our own meal and drinks at a Christmas luncheon get together at a nearby restaurant. Sounds to me like the “benefits” may have gotten a bit extravagant in the government subsidized workplace since I retired.

This would be a lovely gesture if the money was raised by staff and not taken out of taxpayer funding. If it is taxpayer funds it should be returned to taxpayers … every dine of it, immediately.

Pyrrhus November 24, 2020 at 8:26 AM

You must have worked at some really crappy places. Only one place I worked at was there a potluck one year and hardly anyone showed up. After that it was always catered or held at an off site event during work hours. Even when I worked in manufacturing, the company sponsored the holiday party. A company isn’t obligated to throw a holiday party but if they do, don’t expect your employees to foot the bill.

Gittyup November 24, 2020 at 7:00 PM

@Phyrrus I worked at UC Berkeley and Cal State Hayward. Our paychecks came from the State of California, and let me tell you, the State of California does not finance a holiday party for employees! Neither did we get Christmas bonuses! I would think the same would be true for local government.

In my opinion, taxpayers should not be financing holiday parties for government employees. Or, bonuses. In the private sector, the company can spend its profits however they see fit, but in the public sector, it’s a different story.

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