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Old 10-29-2016, 12:54 PM
 
26,589 posts, read 52,286,267 times
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Could this be the endgame all along... single payer with private supplemental coverage for those willing/able to pay like Medicare?

Incremental is a path to things thought impossible if implemented in totality at one time.
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Old 10-29-2016, 01:01 PM
 
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I should have said the big problem in California is Medi-Cal!
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Old 10-29-2016, 01:18 PM
 
Location: Living rent free in your head
31,042 posts, read 13,584,112 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ultrarunner View Post
The generous Pension System was closed to NEW hires in 1976... it is a cost that continues to drag down the city... with special property tax assessments to prop up the system and it covers over 1000 employees.

Average total compensation for an employee is $162,000. In 2012, 179 Oakland police officers took home over $200,000 in total compensation

Oakland pushes cuts to pension payments - SFGate

The real gist is more and more taxpayers have nothing similar with most I know... including myself having zero employer contribution to the 401K or 403B plans.

Just food for thought... especially since 44% of my city's budget is consumed by one department.

A very good friend is City Manager of a Bay Area city and has said many times it is not the salaries causing sleepless nights... it is the unfunded liabilities that will consume the entire city budget and this is why 401K and 403B will continue to replace pensions.

Some have said it is nothing more than pension envy... it is a little more than that when the homeowners average $500 in added taxes just to prop up a pension that closed in 1976 or five separate special assessments to prop up teachers...
I looked up the 1976 pension plan and I don't know what to say about that it sounds crazy & it certainly was a foolish thing to do, and it appears to be a local issue, it was never statewide.

BTW, pensions are NOT based on total compensation, that figure in transparent california includes the value of benefits, i.e. employer contributions to pensions, health insurance dental and vision insurance, workers comp costs etc. Looking at the Oakland data the value of benefits ranged from $40,000 -$60,000. But you actually said that they take that much home which is just not correct, to get a picture of what their actual take home pay, you not only have to deduct the value of benefits, but also deduct their contributions to retirement, health insurance and other benefits - and from that you would have to deduct ordinary deductions such as tax withholding. That still leaves them with a nice chunk of change, but it's not nearly as dramatic as thinking of the image of cops cashing their paycheck and going home with $200,000

I'm not saying they are not paid too much, in reality I think they are, but here's the kicker...when San Jose tried to cut pensions, pay and benefits they had 265 police officers resign and 167 retire after the Measure B vote. And even after restoring the pay cuts they still can't keep new hires So putting aside the angst over what these employees are doing to the City budget -the real question is how do you fix it and keep those positions staffed? I don't see it happening unless it was statewide and that isn't going to happen. The repercussions from measure B demonstrate how hard it is to put the genie back in the bottle.

Last edited by 2sleepy; 10-29-2016 at 01:28 PM..
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Old 10-29-2016, 01:25 PM
 
29,775 posts, read 34,863,854 times
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^^^^^^ the last paragraph is Bada Bing. Pensions and other benefits were often enhanced when recruitment and retention became a problem. States are having problems because of salary constraints. NC is a perfect example of fiscal constraint, then a teacher shortage crisis and now a priority on salaries albeit to late perhaps
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Old 10-29-2016, 01:34 PM
 
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Most professions consider total compensation... as in the package... I know wealthy that work for $1 salary annually... their benefits package is worth millions.

I foolishly took a pay cut when I went the corporate route... the benefits were very generous and having worked for myself over 10 years I wanted to see it the grass was greener... and it was for a couple of years.

That Great 401k Retirement Program with generous match never materialized due to mergers and acquisitions... leaving me only 20% vested... this was my first experience... seeing thousands of dollars in my account simply vanish due to vesting... then it was the medical... which now costs about a $100 a week... same for the bonus plan... many bought stock in the company stock plan... made hundreds of thousands at retirement... By the time I was eligible the company was sold... and so it went.

Public employee retirement plans are dragging down my city and will continue to do so... the city leaders that made these deals are long dead... yet residents not even born shoulder the burden... it simply is not fair to future generations...

There was a story in the Tribune listed all the pensioners having received millions in retirement and some have 40 years in retirement.

As I write this a campaign worker for a Teacher Initiative was just at the door... she was looking for support because the tax measure goes after 250k income and her reasoning is these are the people with money so they need to pay their fair share.

This is the problem... too much is asked from too few with many having no skin in the game...
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Old 10-29-2016, 01:39 PM
 
26,589 posts, read 52,286,267 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TuborgP View Post
^^^^^^ the last paragraph is Bada Bing. Pensions and other benefits were often enhanced when recruitment and retention became a problem. States are having problems because of salary constraints. NC is a perfect example of fiscal constraint, then a teacher shortage crisis and now a priority on salaries albeit to late perhaps
As one of my friends said with 30 years in and deciding to retire... the retirement is so good it simply is not worth working for the $2 an hour difference vs being retired.

San Jose actively recruited friends of mine form East Bay Departments... they had huge sign on because they were fluent in Cambodian, Laotian, etc...

I keep hearing about teacher shortages yet all my new grad teachers are having an awful time securing full time employment...

The National Guard offered tens of thousands for retention and 10 years later the government is coming after them saying they did not qualify... ruining credit, subjecting to collections... what a mess.
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Old 10-29-2016, 01:57 PM
 
26,589 posts, read 52,286,267 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2sleepy View Post

I'm not saying they are not paid too much, in reality I think they are, but here's the kicker...when San Jose tried to cut pensions, pay and benefits they had 265 police officers resign and 167 retire after the Measure B vote. And even after restoring the pay cuts they still can't keep new hires So putting aside the angst over what these employees are doing to the City budget -the real question is how do you fix it and keep those positions staffed? I don't see it happening unless it was statewide and that isn't going to happen. The repercussions from measure B demonstrate how hard it is to put the genie back in the bottle.
It is not just rank and file... in one month my city had 5 police chiefs or acting chief or interim chief...

Really makes the person on the street question everything from compensation, retirement, hiring, competency, overhead, effectiveness in all aspects of civil service.

Several close friends have homeschooled... their kids are all in top Universities... Stanford and Santa Clara to name two... again... HOME SCHOOLED

Also, private schools do so much at a fraction of the cost... especially faith based.

As far a recruitment...

Any job that has hundreds of applicants for each position wouldn't seem to be having a problem...

Retention is dependant on options available... if one department expends money for training and another can poach... it may very well be worth it to a small department to pay more for a known quantity without the risk/cost of training.

I have tested for several departments.... as mentioned 12 of my friend joined departments right after 2 year degrees...

I though I would be smart and get my 4 year degree and enjoy a 4% salary bump... well, in those 2 extra years departments closed academies...

Had a sit down with the Chief of one city and he said it was all timing... whereas they would pay cadet and academy costs in prior years they had stopped... he told me to pay my own way through the academy and graduate at the top and come see him...

I do have some insight as my Law Enforcement Uncle died in the line of duty and my father taught Public High School early in his career.

The ironic thing is Police Officers starting out couldn't even think of starting a family... many worked second jobs to make ends meet.

When Dad was teaching just about all had summer work lined up... again, they couldn't support a family as a new teacher starting out.
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Old 10-29-2016, 02:07 PM
 
Location: Living rent free in your head
31,042 posts, read 13,584,112 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ultrarunner View Post
I have tested for several departments.... as mentioned 12 of my friend joined departments right after 2 year degrees...I though I would be smart and get my 4 year degree and enjoy a 4% salary bump... well, in those 2 extra years departments closed academies... Had a sit down with the Chief of one city and he said it was all timing... whereas they would pay cadet and academy costs in prior years they had stopped... he told me to pay my own way through the academy and graduate at the top and come see him...
I know that Contra Costa Sheriff still operates their own academy and cadets are paid during their time in the academy- same with Alameda Co. Sheriff and CHP. Also, San Jose pays your salary while you attend the South Bay Regional Public Safety Consortium so you definitely have some options, have you looked into those agencies? If you get hired by any one of those you can always quit after you graduate from the academy and go to work for another agency.
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Old 10-29-2016, 02:13 PM
 
29,775 posts, read 34,863,854 times
Reputation: 11705
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ultrarunner View Post
As one of my friends said with 30 years in and deciding to retire... the retirement is so good it simply is not worth working for the $2 an hour difference vs being retired.

San Jose actively recruited friends of mine form East Bay Departments... they had huge sign on because they were fluent in Cambodian, Laotian, etc...

I keep hearing about teacher shortages yet all my new grad teachers are having an awful time securing full time employment...

The National Guard offered tens of thousands for retention and 10 years later the government is coming after them saying they did not qualify... ruining credit, subjecting to collections... what a mess.
Probably because they are all applying to the same desirable school systems either because of student quality or salary/benefits
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Old 10-29-2016, 02:27 PM
 
26,589 posts, read 52,286,267 times
Reputation: 20413
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2sleepy View Post
I know that Contra Costa Sheriff still operates their own academy and cadets are paid during their time in the academy- same with Alameda Co. Sheriff and CHP. Also, San Jose pays your salary while you attend the South Bay Regional Public Safety Consortium so you definitely have some options, have you looked into those agencies? If you get hired by any one of those you can always quit after you graduate from the academy and go to work for another agency.
I tested for Oakland... first choice and what I really wanted... also tested for San Leandro and Alameda County...

It was odd in that all the departments had open positions but none were willing to pay the cost of the academy...

The ironic thing at the time is Oakland had shut down the academy leaving many agencies in a bind as they used the Oakland Academy.

All I can say is what a difference 2 years made... timing has never been my strong suit.

Asked why they kept the application process open and it was in part to keep apparatus going... and there were applicants that had completed training applying...

Of those hired when I applied... none were as cadets... some had military MP background... some from other agencies and as the Chief of SLPD told me two had paid their own way through the academy which indicated their real desire for law enforcement career.

In later years several of my tenants applied and were accepted into the academy and I was contacted by the departments for each of them for background checks... Not a one graduated... not one and the last one was almost finished and washed out...
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