P.G. council OKs leaving CalPERS

P.G. council OKs leaving CalPERS

There are 5 comments on the Monterey County Herald story from Jun 19, 2008, titled P.G. council OKs leaving CalPERS. In it, Monterey County Herald reports that:

Pacific Grove may be the first city in California to try opting out of the state Public Employee Retirement System.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Monterey County Herald.

Concerned Citizen

Watsonville, CA

#1 Jun 20, 2008
.... "and enrolling new employees in a defined contribution system"? Such as a 401k type plan that most of the general working folks have? Great idea! If it's good enough for the regular working folk, then it's good enough for the peace officers and firemen/women. Let the people be responsible for their own retirement. Afterall, these professions typically have responsibility to the folks that pay their salaries. I say "Out with CalPERS, in with the new generation 401k type plans". Let's face it, maybe not now, but sooner or later, we are all going to be paying to bail out CalPERS. It's better for all workers.
ohn

Monterey, CA

#2 Jul 4, 2008
CalPers should stay, what the city doesn't tell the public is that the emloyee's contribute 9% of their salary to their PERS, and when the market is up and the city over pays PERS at the end of the year PERS kicks back to the city why doesn't the city place those monies in a "PERS rainy day fund " instead they put it all back into the general fund and spend on things like fighting golf course lawsuits and harrassment suit etc. police and fire deserve the retirement i don't see any of you lining up to run into a burning building or protecting our streets typical ignorant ranting from someone who doesn't know the whole story try doing some research before spouting.
John Gault

South Lake Tahoe, CA

#3 Jul 4, 2008
These first two comments perfectly illustrate how fun it must be for PG City leaders to make decisions that please anybody. I'd guess that a poll would show the community split just about down the middle on this issue. People who benefit from Cal Pers retirements will fight losing the plan to the death, while people in the private sector can't understand why public retirements are so much more lucrative than Social Security.

Both comments make some sense. Funding Cal Pers is the key reason a majority of county and city governments in California are teetering on insolvency, not just PG. PG just served as the canary in the mine shaft. On the other hand, in the public sector having Cal Pers is critical to attracting and retaining qualified workers in a labor pool that is constantly shrinking. Losing Cal Pers, especially for public safety positions, would make it impossible to compete for good people to fill vacancies. Even with a good contract and Cal Pers there are about six vacancies in the police department that have been difficult to fill.

Good luck to PG and their employees, and to every other California town in this current economy. There are NO easy answers.
sidewinder

Reno, NV

#4 Jul 4, 2008
Ohn no, you got it wrong.

City government employees pay very little of their pension cost... 9% is nothing when you consider that it's only of the expected cost to pay cash benefits for only one year, they pay nothing to offset the incurred liability for the many years of promised payments which are going unfunded.

A better way to explain CalPERS is that it's a pyramid scheme that is ready to collapse. Public employee labor unions should have supported reform to convert to a funded IRA/401k-like plan when the state had good credit to sell bonds to cover the unfunded liability. Now, they will be lucky to get any unfunded benefits as the system begins to crash.
ohn wrote:
CalPers should stay, what the city doesn't tell the public is that the emloyee's contribute 9% of their salary to their PERS, and when the market is up and the city over pays PERS at the end of the year PERS kicks back to the city why doesn't the city place those monies in a "PERS rainy day fund " instead they put it all back into the general fund and spend on things like fighting golf course lawsuits and harrassment suit etc. police and fire deserve the retirement i don't see any of you lining up to run into a burning building or protecting our streets typical ignorant ranting from someone who doesn't know the whole story try doing some research before spouting.
Pacific Grove Resident

Salinas, CA

#5 Jul 31, 2008
In the event of a new retirement structure, what happens with the employees who paid into CAL PERS and advised hired with the guarantee and the promise of a retirement. The general public may not realize that city employees do pay into Social Security and only have CAL PERS to look forward to. It will be impossible for them to make up all the lost time. Its stealing. Further, it is assumed Pacific Grove employees have excellent benefits. Unfortunately, these employees are paying $1,300.00 per month for medical benefits. These benefits are offered to everyone in the United States at those costs. This is not a benefit. To take CAL PERS away from city employees will be a mistake and argued to another loss for the City of Pacific Grove. We have already lost too much to lawsuits. Perhaps we can look out side of taking away the little bit offered to the city employees and perhaps look at how the city cousil can start saving money instead of spending it.

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