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Pension reform must be tackled

October 02, 2012

Gov. Jerry Brown and the Democratic-controlled Legislature claimed a huge victory in a strong bipartisan support for AB340, pension reform. I do not believe a 48-8 vote in the state Assembly and a 38-1 vote in the state Senate, mostly along party lines, is bipartisan, but more of the same union control of our government in both Sacramento and locally.

The planned opposition to pension reform by the unions was expected. So was a spineless attempt for serious pension reform by the Democratic Party, which is beholden to the public employee unions for their endorsements, campaign contributions and get-out-the-vote efforts.

According to the Social Security administrator, approximately $30,000 a year is the maximum payout, and the average Social Security check is about $14,745 a year. Additionally, most private-sector workers need to work to age 67 to receive maximum benefits.

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In 2011 the median income in Glendale was $47,647. In the same year, nearly 30% of Glendale city employees had annual incomes over $100,000 and after 30 years of service at age 50 or 55 were eligible to retire with 90% or 75% of their last years of spiked income.

For real pension reform in November, we need to vote for individuals who have not benefited by endorsements and campaign contributions by public employee unions, and we also need in the future to vote into office a true reform governor like Scott Walker of Wisconsin.

Unless we have serious pension reform, the California taxpayers will continue to have to shoulder two government payrolls — current employees and retirees. Hocus-pocus pension reform.

Mike Mohill
Glendale

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