Newport Beach city leaders are going to extraordinary lengths and expense to convince taxpayers that Measure EE is "for their protection," and that the passage of the 38 items will "increase efficiencies. "

One must ask, Why?

I urge citizens and voters to think about the consequences of Measure EE:

Are taking away of our rights, and loosening conflict-of-interest regulations, "protections," or are they simply ways for the city to steamroller unreasonable regulations and make decisions which may not be in the public interest?

Are items such as not providing adequate public notice, ceasing to maintain records of public testimony, or removing adequate review of proposed contract expenditures "efficiencies" or are they more attempts to avoid transparency and accountability?

Our last city charter amendments have brought us such "efficiencies" as a Civic Center project exceeding three to four times the originally approved cost, public meeting notes not including citizens' testimony and fees and tax increases in increments of over 300%.

Newport, and all cities, are charged with protecting taxpayers' interests, and responsible management.

What are our city representatives doing that they know will not pass muster with constituents?

As a responsible member of the Newport Beach community, I urge you to vote no on Measure EE for your protection, and that of the community.

Business executive DENYS OBERMAN lives in Newport Beach.