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Dukeboy01
08-20-2011, 18:35
So it appears that the "Public Employee Pensions Are Robbing the City Blind" bandwagon is about to roll through my neck of the woods. I opened up the website of the Lexington Herald- Leader a little while ago and it appears they are updating their site for a big story on the Police and Fire pension system in the Sunday paper tommorrow.

Here's a link to the lead editorial cartoon. Note the date of August 21, 2011.
(And, yes, I'm Dukeboy everywhere I roam...)

http://www.kentucky.com/2011/08/20/1851740/joel-pett-aug-21.html

There is also now a searchable database of pensions awarded in the last five years.

http://www.kentucky.com/2011/08/19/1851013/search-the-police-and-fire-pensions.html

Nothing good is coming. I can feel it.

SpoiledBySig
08-20-2011, 19:00
Nope. Nothing good is coming for sure.

Many cities are already doing that. Many cities are planning to do the same.

Everybody's broke...Cities are claiming they're broke,things are a changing.

It's getting real ugly out there.

Vigilant
08-20-2011, 20:43
Let's start with our politicians' extremely lucrative compensation, benefits, and retirement, then start looking for some folks who want to be in politics for the RIGHT reasons, and not to fleece the public. With the right people in office, for the right reasons, we can fix this, including the stinking liberal judges. I fear that without this change, the worst is yet to come.

I'm vested in my retirement. Hopefully there is not much they can do to me, since thay have to honor the terms that I signed on under. Hopefully.

Vigilant
08-20-2011, 20:46
While we're on this subject, let's start a class-action lawsuit against our pitiful excuse for a government, forcing them to enact legislation that would bar anyone who receives any type of government assistance from voting, to eliminate a huge conflict of interest.

Atilla the Hun for President.

Actually, I like the thought of an Atilla/Dragoon ticket... :thumbsup:

msu_grad_121
08-20-2011, 21:45
Actually, I like the thought of an Atilla/Dragoon ticket... :thumbsup:

Make it Dragoon/Atilla and I'm on board! And Cochese will be head of their secret service detail.

Vigilant
08-20-2011, 21:50
Make it Dragoon/Atilla and I'm on board! And Cochese will be head of their secret service detail.

Thanks for catching that. Father/Son does make better sense than Son/Father. :rofl:

Right on the money for head of Secret Service detail.

SpoiledBySig
08-21-2011, 08:27
I'm vested in my retirement. Hopefully there is not much they can do to me, since thay have to honor the terms that I signed on under. Hopefully.


I have often wondered about that also (if my pension is safe, or not?).

I am collecting from one (1) 20 year police pension and I'm vested in another current police pension with the Florida State Retirement system (FRS).

Could things get so crazy that it would affect my City Police Pension?...let alone my current vested FRS pension?

Nobody knows yet. All I really do know is most Law Enforcement Agencies are NOT hiring and they can make any type of agreement for any new LEO who only wants to get into Law Enforcement at any cost.

Things are so unstable in the economy, that many people (including LEO's) dare not try retirement...which is stopping/bottle-necking the hiring and new jobs.

This topic really has my attention...It's a mess!:faint:

steveksux
08-21-2011, 08:35
So let me see if I understand this situation correctly....

One of the reasons you take a job like police/fire even with the crappy pay is because you get a good pension, right?

So if they take the pension away, or cut it substantially, they're going to make up for the many years of crappy pay with a retroactive raise, right? Right???

Randy

SpoiledBySig
08-21-2011, 12:24
So let me see if I understand this situation correctly....

One of the reasons you take a job like police/fire even with the crappy pay is because you get a good pension, right?

So if they take the pension away, or cut it substantially, they're going to make up for the many years of crappy pay with a retroactive raise, right? Right???

Randy


All I know is I took the job (in 1983) because I wanted a steady job, with good benefits. I remember friends and even my own brothers laughing at me for having, "Such a low paying job". They were even bragging about their six figure salaries all during the 80's and the 90's.

Now that they have spent all their money on fancy cars, European vacations, liposuction, etc. they find out they can't pay the $5000.00 + mortgage payments...that they got from refinancing their homes and spending the money...so they foreclose on their homes, walking away from a half million or more in debt....which was a BIG cause of the financial crisis.

So, I get gradual small raises as I stay in my career and get my police pension that was promised to me and that I was working waiting for for 20 years, taking all sorts of crap that comes with the job...and they're ready to tell me I don't deserve this pension.

They spent and wasted far more money that I ever made in their lifetime...they had their choices in life...and they want us to suffer with them?

That's the situation. If anybody can explain it better...please chime in.

merlynusn
08-21-2011, 13:04
I actually called the NC DOL about the wage/hour thing. For instance, they stopped paying our long term disability insurance payments. What cost the city 40 cents a week now costs me $6.50 a week. Is it a lot? No, but it cost them $20.80 a year and now it ends up costing me $338 a year. Something like a $358.80 swing in benefits. I asked the DOL how they could do it. They said that since it's a government agency, they can do whatever they want as long as they give you 24 hours notice before they do it.

They promised us raises and a cost of living increase each year. I'm still waiting for that to happen. They claim that due to the economy they don't have the money. They fail to mention they have $100 million unallocated dollars squirreled away in their funds (which is $20 million more than when they gave raises 5 years ago). So it's obvious they are just using the economy as an excuse to not give us a raise.

To the OP... the little blurb for the pension search says this:

Service vs. disability pensions
Police officers and firefighters can retire with service pensions after 20 years on the job. They can retire earlier with a tax-free disability pension if they convince pension officials that they no longer can work. Over the last five fiscal years, ending June 30, 38 percent of police and fire retirees were awarded disability pensions.

So is your pension safe? Nope, not at all. Not for any of us.

ateamer
08-21-2011, 13:19
I'm just going to say it right now, before some mope comes in here and starts bashing us. Only a worthless idiot would try and take our pensions and benefits away. Go whine about us somewhere else, and call a talk radio host or one of the clones who follows them when someone breaks into your house.

wprebeck
08-21-2011, 13:51
Dukeboy,


I know Lexington is a bit different than CERS hazardous...can they change your benefits once enrolled in the plan? Statute prevents any changes to CERS once enrolled in a system, but can be made to NEW members down the road. The change from 20 to 25 for our plans is a good example.

JC2317
08-21-2011, 14:09
When are all the people that are so fired up about the pension I earned and contributed to going to go out and yell and scream about all the money that is stolen and wasted by medicaid, welfare and unemployment abuse? C'mon
It's ok to bash the hardworking civil servant but don't go after the golden goose- the people dependent on the government. The earlier post was right. On public assistance = NO Voting Rights.

opelwasp
08-21-2011, 14:21
Just so the municipalities and the retarded public understand,

What goes around comes around.

Don't be surprised when you find out your friendly local policeman stops putting in any effort to his job. You burn his pathetic pay and his hard earned pension, they are not gonna care about your problems. They will just do what is necessary to get home everyday.

Peter Gibbons said it best:

Peter Gibbons: The thing is, Bob, it's not that I'm lazy, it's that I just don't care.
Bob Porter: Don't... don't care?
Peter Gibbons: It's a problem of motivation, all right? Now if I work my ass off and Initech ships a few extra units, I don't see another dime, so where's the motivation? And here's something else, Bob: I have eight different bosses right now.
Bob Slydell: I beg your pardon?
Peter Gibbons: Eight bosses.
Bob Slydell: Eight?
Peter Gibbons: Eight, Bob. So that means that when I make a mistake, I have eight different people coming by to tell me about it. That's my only real motivation is not to be hassled, that and the fear of losing my job. But you know, Bob, that will only make someone work just hard enough not to get fired.

South Fla
08-21-2011, 14:42
I worked hard and paid into the retirement system for 25 years.

You say that you are going broke and going to cut my pension?

That is YOUR fault you are going broke, not mine. I lived up to my end of the agreement.

We signed a contract, remember?

Pay me. Period.

Vigilant
08-21-2011, 14:58
Maybe it's time for some pissed-off public servants to run for office, eh?

CJStudent
08-21-2011, 14:59
I worked hard and paid into the retirement system for 25 years.

You say that you are going broke and going to cut my pension?

That is YOUR fault you are going broke, not mine. I lived up to my end of the agreement.

We signed a contract, remember?

Pay me. Period.

Quoted for truth. I'm waiting for it to happen at the federal level, if it hasn't already and we just haven't been told about it. :upeyes:

Dukeboy01
08-21-2011, 16:35
Well, the article was as bad as I expected.

http://www.kentucky.com/2011/08/21/1852349/lax-disability-rules-for-police.html#storylink=omni_popular#wgt=pop

I've rebutted some of the nonsense in in the comments section.

Dukeboy01
08-21-2011, 16:38
Dukeboy,


I know Lexington is a bit different than CERS hazardous...can they change your benefits once enrolled in the plan? Statute prevents any changes to CERS once enrolled in a system, but can be made to NEW members down the road. The change from 20 to 25 for our plans is a good example.

The honest answer is probably not, but no one will know for sure until they try it. The case law/ legislative finding of fact that covers you in CERS doesn't specifically address Lexington since we are a seperate entity. Common sense would tell you that the same principle would eventually win out, but that doesn't mean we wouldn't have to have a long, drawn out legal battle to prove it if the city officials decide to get squirrelly.

ETA: KRS 67A.640 kinda covers it, but it's not specific enough for my taste. It does go back unchanged to the 1974 legislation that created the Urban- County form of government, so that's a plus.

67A.640 Obligations of government.
It is the intention of KRS 67A.360 to 67A.690 that the payment of the required contributions by the government shall include all allowances, annuities, benefits, and administration expenses and shall be the obligation of the government.
Effective: July 1, 1974
History: Created 1974 Ky. Acts ch. 106, sec. 29, effective July 1, 1974.

ETA2: KRS 67A.655 lays out the procedure that they could use to move us to CERS, but it requires them to have fully funded the system before they can do it, so that's not going to happen any time soon.

67A.655 Transition to County Employees Retirement System.
The legislative body in an urban-county government may issue the appropriate order, pursuant to KRS 78.530(1), directing participation for policemen and firefighters in the County Employees Retirement System. All new employees who would have been granted membership in the policemen's and firefighter's retirement fund of the urban-county government shall be members of the County Employees Retirement System. All active members of the policemen's and firefighter's retirement fund of the urban-county government at the time of transition to the County Employees Retirement System may choose membership in the County Employees Retirement System or may retain membership in the local retirement fund, but the legislative body may withdraw its order prior to the effective date if the number of active members choosing to transfer is not sufficient to fully fund the balance of the cost of transition after available local pension assets are included.

Reading the section that I bolded, it makes it sound like the people who are currently active would have a choice as to whether or not they wanted to enter CERS or not. It's still not strong enough for my liking.

DWARREN123
08-21-2011, 16:49
Politicians should always be the first to get hit with cuts, keeps the BS down.

Dukeboy01
08-21-2011, 16:55
To the OP... the little blurb for the pension search says this:

Service vs. disability pensions
Police officers and firefighters can retire with service pensions after 20 years on the job. They can retire earlier with a tax-free disability pension if they convince pension officials that they no longer can work. Over the last five fiscal years, ending June 30, 38 percent of police and fire retirees were awarded disability pensions.

So is your pension safe? Nope, not at all. Not for any of us.

Yeah, I caught that and left a comment on it. There's a place for editorializing and I don't think a database page is it.

Ajon412
08-21-2011, 16:56
Make it Dragoon/Atilla and I'm on board! And Cochese will be head of their secret service detail.

Count me in...Where do I sign up?????:wavey:

Ajon412
08-21-2011, 17:11
I worked hard and paid into the retirement system for 25 years.

You say that you are going broke and going to cut my pension?

That is YOUR fault you are going broke, not mine. I lived up to my end of the agreement.

We signed a contract, remember?

Pay me. Period.

You're correct, but I'm afraid that if things continue on their current course, it's gonna become our problem whether we like it of not.. I've read way too many stories recently about public employees NOT receiving their pensions and having to go back into the work force at sixty something years of age...It's disgusting.....

merlynusn
08-21-2011, 17:24
Until the police/fire whomever retirees start suing the cities and state, nothing will happen except they will keep bleeding our pensions dry and tell us "tough luck!" I know many people stay through the burn out to make it to that pension. If that pension wasn't around, I think people will see a drastically different LE than they do now.

fla2760
08-21-2011, 18:24
So let me see if I understand this situation correctly....

One of the reasons you take a job like police/fire even with the crappy pay is because you get a good pension, right?

So if they take the pension away, or cut it substantially, they're going to make up for the many years of crappy pay with a retroactive raise, right? Right???

Randy


Absolutely.

Patchman
08-21-2011, 18:41
Yep, I can't see anything good in the upcoming future.

To blame the state and local retirement/pension systems for the current fiscal problems is just a witch hunt. Just like the Salem Witch hunt of the 1600s.

What I find amazing is that all those who's pensions consist of no pensions, or defined contribution (stock market based 401K's) are against defined benefits (as in most civil service benefits) pensions. After what the stock market has gone through since 2001, since 2008 and since a few weeks ago, you'd think instead of hating defined benefits benefits, these people would be bargaining with their employes for a defined benefits pension plan for themselves.

Based on the past decade (since 2001) of market performances, individuals trying to outsmart the market, and relying on stock market performances (ie: 401k) for sufficient retirement money is relying on a fool's gambit.

Dukeboy01
08-21-2011, 19:53
That's the problem: they want everybody to be as SOL as they are.

Patchman
08-21-2011, 20:14
Misery loves company?

Yes, definitely.

FiremanMike
08-22-2011, 05:36
So it appears that the "Public Employee Pensions Are Robbing the City Blind" bandwagon is about to roll through my neck of the woods. I opened up the website of the Lexington Herald- Leader a little while ago and it appears they are updating their site for a big story on the Police and Fire pension system in the Sunday paper tommorrow.

Here's a link to the lead editorial cartoon. Note the date of August 21, 2011.
(And, yes, I'm Dukeboy everywhere I roam...)

http://www.kentucky.com/2011/08/20/1851740/joel-pett-aug-21.html

There is also now a searchable database of pensions awarded in the last five years.

http://www.kentucky.com/2011/08/19/1851013/search-the-police-and-fire-pensions.html

Nothing good is coming. I can feel it.

We're neck deep in our fight up here brother, and it's been nasty. The republican party underhandedly passed the bill, but it certainly appears that we have a good shot for repeal. We obtained over a million signatures (I believe 900,000 were deemed valid) making it the most signatures ever obtained for a petition, so we have it on the ballot.

It's not fun, it's a stressful fight, and I feel for you. By the way, you're going to find a lot of anti-union haters on this board.. It's good practice for what you'll face in the media.

Vigilant
08-22-2011, 15:47
For the most part, my views on unions are not favorable, although I do agree there are exceptions. I'm not too familiar with unions in Public Safety. Obviously, I would not believe in having an ability to strike whenever such a group gets the itch to do so. Perhaps a cleaner, more genuine example of a union is what some agencies need in this day and age.

Maybe the Cop Talk crowd should take the first step, and start our own union: the IBAB. Yes, the International Brotherhood of Ass Beaters. :rofl:

wprebeck
08-22-2011, 16:03
We cannot strike, and I wouldn't agree to it if we could.

Strikes in public safety are counterproductive and can arguably seen as a violation of one's oath to serve. We can, and should, picket city hall and other prominent locales if contracts talks fail.

SpoiledBySig
08-22-2011, 16:07
My hat's off to the Hollywood (FL) Police Officers, who agreed to all take a 12.5% pay cut in order to save the jobs of 13 cops slated to be laid off. At least these newer cops can work towards some sort of pension.

http://www.local10.com/news/28333160/detail.html

I like my money, but I too would be willing to take a pay cut to save the jobs of other officers. I wonder if this is what it's all coming to?

Things are getting worse it seems. It's really a mess.

Vigilant
08-22-2011, 16:15
We cannot strike, and I wouldn't agree to it if we could.

Strikes in public safety are counterproductive and can arguably seen as a violation of one's oath to serve. We can, and should, picket city hall and other prominent locales if contracts talks fail.

I would be surprised if picketing alone solves much.

Landric
08-22-2011, 16:25
North Carolina just passed legislation changing the vesting period in the various state retirement systems from 5 years to 10 years. IIRC it goes into effect 11/1/11, so if anyone is working on getting a government job in NC for the first time, it would be in your best interest to get in before that date.

I'm already vested in the Local Government LEO retirement system. Hopefully that means I am safe. North Carolina's retirement system has traditionally been in pretty good financial shape. Hopefully that will continue also. We contribute 6% of our meager salaries to the system and can't retire with full benefits without either 30 years of service or age 55.

Articles like these make it seem like public employees get some great, free pension benefit, and that causes government to go broke. Not even remotely true. I pay several thousand dollars a year into the system, and I (like most government employees) make significantly less than private sector employees with similar jobs. My reward is supposed to be my pension, which is supposed to keep me from living in poverty when I retire. I'd be happy to give up my defined benefit pension for a substantial raise (like $30+K a year more), but that is never going to happen.

Vigilant
08-22-2011, 17:14
North Carolina made another notable change some time ago. I believe the effective date was October 1, 2006 when they required 20 years of service (for teachers and state employees other than LE) in order to receive free health insurance for life upon retirement. After 10 years, the State would pay for half, which is still not too bad. I support this, because it was too easy for someone to put in their five and quit, and be set for life.

As far as changing the vesting peiod to 10 years, I don't think it's a good idea, but as long as they leave it at that, I don't see a problem.

Unfortunately, until the voting public brings about an overhaul of our political system (and I hold little hope of that happening), I'm afraid we will continue to see worse times.

God help us.

merlynusn
08-23-2011, 08:12
North Carolina just passed legislation changing the vesting period in the various state retirement systems from 5 years to 10 years. IIRC it goes into effect 11/1/11, so if anyone is working on getting a government job in NC for the first time, it would be in your best interest to get in before that date.

When did that happen? I've only got 3.5 years. Is it for new hires only or is it for everyone who isn't vested?

I see that being the clincher for a lot of people here. I'd say we'll see a mass exodus. What with not being vested, benefits costs going up and pay raises non-existent.

Patchman
08-23-2011, 08:23
Maybe the Cop Talk crowd should take the first step, and start our own union: the IBAB. Yes, the International Brotherhood of Ass Beaters. :rofl:

IBJBT.

We can'r strike either.

With us, in the last 2 or 3 years, New jacks hired need 25 years to retirment instead of 20. And they cannot borrow from their pension, ever.