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Re: Prop35

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As an engineer in the private sector (always have been and always will be),
and someone who thinks Prop 35 will be good law (assuming the people of
California are smart enough to pass it), I would like to surprise Ben by
agreeing with him.  I do hear in some of the stuff I've gotten (not so much
from SEAOC but from other professional organizations to which I belong) an
implication that work done by engineers in the public sector is by
definition not as good as that done by those in the private sector, and I
don't think that's true.

I don't mean to slam Shafat (I would assume he did not intend any insult of
SEAOC's public sector members), and as I said I happen to think the
proposition will be good law, but I do think the public sector gets a bad
wrap some of the time.  I suppose hyperbole come with the election process,
but to say that a no vote on this proposition means all those terrible
things SEAOC it means implies that without this change in the State
Constitution there will be no more contracting out of engineering services
and all work will be done by those awful beauracrats.  While the
beauracrats' union (PECG) might like this to be the case, the people of
California roundly turned down a proposition that would have banned
contracting in most circumstances a few years ago, and it is currently
common practice.  Prop 35 as I understand it modifies the Constitution to
make it much harder for the law to be changed (as PECG would like) to make
contracting out more difficult.

Ben says that the, " ... best approach, in [his] opinion is for each
jurisdiction to perform a comparative evaluation of cost, time and quality
to determine which is the better choice for them on each project (in-house
or contract) and proceed accordingly."

That's rational, which means all of us engineer's can agree on it.  It's
allowed under current law, and will be institutionalized by the passage of
Prop 35.  It sounds like Ben might even vote for thing -- he's just saying
that he doesn't like the implication of some of the language used by some of
the people supporting it, and I think he has a point.

Drew A. Norman, S.E.
Drew A. Norman and Associates

----- Original Message -----
From: "Yousefi, Ben" <Ben.Yousefi(--nospam--at)>
To: <seaint(--nospam--at)>
Sent: Thursday, October 19, 2000 4:47 PM
Subject: RE: Prop35

> As a longstanding member of SEAOC, and an engineer in the public sector, I
> do not appreciate the way this proposition is being pushed by the board. I
> do realize that it is critical for the public agencies to have the
> flexibility of contracting out when they have exhausted all the internal
> resources or when the expertise is not available internally or in case of
> emergency. But to imply that whenever a project is done by a public agency
> design professional it is going to cost the tax payers more an take longer
> is outright wrong. SEAOC should be more sensitive to many of its members
> that work in the public sector and not push this in the manner that it
> I do know first hand that, at least in our shop, our customers prefer
> in-house plan check to the consultant review by a ratio of 4 to 1
> to a survey we recently did. The best approach, in my opinion is for each
> jurisdiction to perform a comparative evaluation of cost, time and quality
> to determine which is the better choice for them on each project (in-house
> or contract) and proceed accordingly.
> My 2 cents
> Ben Yousefi, SE
> San Jose, CA
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Shafat Qazi [SMTP:seaint-ad(--nospam--at)]
> Sent: Thursday, October 19, 2000 3:07 PM
> To: seaint(--nospam--at)
> Subject: Fwd: Prop35
> >From: lee(--nospam--at)
> >To: shafat(--nospam--at)
> >Date: Thu, 19 Oct 2000 12:29:00  -0700
> >Subject:   Prop35
> >Reply-To: lee(--nospam--at)
> >X-Mailer: MT Mail ver. 1.22.4
> >
> >
> >Election Day is Only 18 Days Away -
> >We Need to Keep Working on Getting Out the Yes Vote
> >
> >This is a critical Issue for Design Professionals and the Citizens
> of
> >California. If you have not already done so, please make one last
> effort
> >to get out the vote.
> >
> >Proposition 35 is About Choice
> >
> >What it is: Proposition 35 will be a change to the California State
> >Constitution - it will simply give state and local governments the
> >flexibility to retain private sector engineers and architects.
> >
> >A Yes Vote on Proposition 35 Means:
> >
> >Local Communities, Schools, Hospitals, Towns, Cities, Counties,
> >Get to Choose Engineers, Architects and Contractors for Schools,
> >Transportation and Water Projects.
> >
> >A No Vote Means:
> >
> >No Choice
> >Government Bureaucracy Gets Even Larger
> >More Time to Wait for Needed Projects
> >More Tax Dollars to Pay Salaries and Rent
> >Spend More $$ for Your Community Projects
> >
> >We Need Your Help to Get Out The Yes Vote
> >
> >First, be sure all employees of your firm, not just engineers, are
> aware
> >of the importance of voting for 35. Urge them to go to the polls or
> use
> >their absentee ballot and vote Yes.
> >
> >To E-mail a Friend or Colleague About 35 Go To
> >
> >
> >To send a yes on Prop. 35 Card to a friend or colleague go to
> >
> >
> >For More General Information Visit the Campaign Web Site at
> >