San Diego mayor resumes public-employee enrichment schemes

March 14, 2013

By Chris Reed

Sideshow.Bob.FilnerWell, that didn’t take long.

Bob Filner — a paleoliberal former Democratic congressman who was elected mayor of San Diego in November — is embracing the same sort of ridiculously generous public-employee compensation policies that led to his city’s immense fiscal crisis a decade ago. That crisis amounted to an early warning of the now at-hand pension tsunami afflicting local and state governments around the nation. It was so severe that it led to San Diego being called “Enron by the Sea.”

However, since 2005, seven years of prudence from Republican Mayor Jerry Sanders have actually left San Diego in far better shape than many other California cities. But Filner is determined to change that:

“City politicians already have voted themselves the richest pension benefits of any city employees, but under a new proposal by Mayor Bob Filner, city politicians will have even more to look forward to once they leave office.

“Mayor Filner is asking the City Council to pass an extraordinary law this month to allow former city politicians to “double dip” by collecting full city pensions while being eligible to be rehired by the city with full salaries simultaneously. …

“Filner’s proposal for ex-City Council people is not the only effort to expand pension ‘double dipping’ at City Hall.

“In December 2012, the city’s pension system announced that city employees could retire, start collecting a full pension, and return to work at City Hall on a full salary – provided that they simply wait six months.

“The city’s pension system formulated this policy to help retired city employees thwart IRS efforts to impose a pension penalty tax of 10 percent on government employees who retire and then return to work at the same government agency.”

That’s from Thursday’s U-T San Diego column by former San Diego Councilman Carl DeMaio, a libertarian Republican who lost narrowly to Filner in November.

Buyer’s remorse is likely to set in soon. When Sanders left office, he was very popular.

But despite Sanders’ endorsement, DeMaio was effectively demonized by public employee unions as a radical. Still, it’s doubtful that many of Filner’s voters wanted him to re-embrace the city’s old ways.

A city with a pothole problem that reminds many residents of life in the Third World doesn’t want to see the further enrichment of already well-paid public employees.


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  1. Matthew
    Matthew 14 March, 2013, 09:10

    It should come out of his account directly.

    Reply this comment
  2. us citizen
    us citizen 14 March, 2013, 11:03

    And how did this moron get voted in?

    Reply this comment
  3. Tea for thee
    Tea for thee 14 March, 2013, 20:30

    Low info voters and emotional voters. The unions have the cash to flood the media with ads calling the non-union supported an extremist, wants to kill people and have grandma eating cat food. Most voters tune in a few weeks before the election and then go back to surfing.

    Reply this comment
  4. Bill Gore
    Bill Gore 14 March, 2013, 21:14

    Absolutely unbelievable!
    What utter chutzpa!
    For his next act, Filner must reinstate the union ‘Presidential Benefit’, and extend it to
    all department heads.
    It’ll be fun watching San Diego veer back into the abyss from up here in beautiful Oregon.
    Taxes cannot be raised enough to pay for all this stuff.
    Also, Jerry Sanders, besides being an outstanding manager, is also just a really nice guy…

    Reply this comment
  5. Notwithstanding
    Notwithstanding 16 March, 2013, 11:11

    ..While he was mayor, Sanders collected a $90,000 city pension on top of his $94,000 mayoral salary (and justified it). but I did not see that mentioned once in De maio’s 3/14 editorial nor did i see it mentioned in the above blog or comments. Try honesty, and then, get back to me…

    Reply this comment
  6. Notwithstanding
    Notwithstanding 18 March, 2013, 16:47

    To California scumbag..You can post that blog again or post Demaio’s 3/14 article and you will continue to skirt my point. The blog link you regenerated omits the information that Mayor Sanders collected a pension while employed as mayor.

    Reply this comment
  7. Bill Gore
    Bill Gore 19 March, 2013, 21:52

    Sure, and everyone in the drop program collects/accrues pension benefits while double dipping a city paycheck already. This helps keep their ‘expertise’ in the organization (barf). This is just a gimme to poor souls like Tony Atkins who fail to grasp the next rung up from the Council and have to go it for a while in purgatory without a public job to leech on. The real careerists (Christine Kehoe) never miss a beat: forward! And yes, Jerry Sanders did double dip, doesn’t excuse it, but he’s still a super nice guy in person.

    Reply this comment

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