Jul 30, 2014
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Government Pensions: Scandal Or Red Herring?

Or maybe both? Public employee pensions are in the spotlight. Are we hearing the whole story?

Government Pensions: Scandal Or Red Herring?


Public employee pensions are a hot topic.

Tables like the one below, compiled by the California Pension Reform coalition, incite public opinion like a matador's red cape.

The chart shows retirees like San Leandro's former city manager, its police chief and other  members of what reformers call the $100,000 club.

Are such pensions fair or excessive for the level of service, education and accomplishment of public sector managers versus their private sector peers?

And are the $100,000 clubbers representative of ordinary state or local worker?

Of course not.

A fact sheet from CalPERS shows that the average state worker who retired in 2010-2011 will get $3,065 a month.

Is that too much, too little or just right? 

Public attitudes may be influenced by the fact that private sector pensions are becoming rare.

U.S. News & World Reports says just 31 percent of employees have pensions. Unionized employees are far more likely to have pensions.

Is an attack on pensions an attack on unions?

And do we want to push down benefits down for those who have them or pull them for those who don't?

Heavy questions.

Leave some thoughts in comments. 

This chart shows the name of the retiree, and their monthly and annual draw.

ATTARIAN, DALE $14,302.57 $171,630.84  SAN LEANDRO BISCHOFF, JOHN $9,707.98 $116,495.76  SAN LEANDRO BOHNE, DAVID $12,754.82 $153,057.84  SAN LEANDRO DECOULODE, MARCELUS $12,281.56 $147,378.72  SAN LEANDRO DEKAS, ROBERT $10,928.77 $131,145.24  SAN LEANDRO FONG, NANCY $8,339.79 $100,077.48  SAN LEANDRO GLOVER, DENNIS $12,088.08 $145,056.96  SAN LEANDRO JERMANIS, JOHN $18,779.75 $225,357.00  SAN LEANDRO KITCHEN, JOSEPH $14,100.70 $169,208.40  SAN LEANDRO LUNSFORD, DAN $8,554.65 $102,655.80  SAN LEANDRO MAGINNIS, ROBERT $10,218.52 $122,622.24  SAN LEANDRO MARCHETTI, DANIEL $9,355.74 $112,268.88  SAN LEANDRO MAY, HUGH $9,695.28 $116,343.36  SAN LEANDRO OMEARA, JAMES $10,750.54 $129,006.48  SAN LEANDRO ROCKETT, ROBERT $9,695.55 $116,346.60  SAN LEANDRO RUGG, WILLIAM $8,910.06 $106,920.72  SAN LEANDRO SOLOMON, RENEE $8,713.34 $104,560.08  SAN LEANDRO SPIROU, LOUIS $9,736.64 $116,839.68  SAN LEANDRO STOUT, RANDALL $8,598.86 $103,186.32  SAN LEANDRO

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