Notes and observations – ever wonder where all your money goes?

12 Jun

Somebody came to the blog via a search – “cal pers going broke…” So I googled that, and found this interesting article from “The State Worker”.

Public employees just now losing confidence in CalPERS? So now they want 401K’s.

Just before this article was written, Chris Constantin and Mark Orme (and probably others) opted for 401K accounts instead of asking for more money toward their calpers pensions.

Unfortunately the link to the Enterprise Record article in that post is no longer good – the ER is in so much trouble, financially, they can’t afford to let anybody read for free? Links I’ve posted to other articles in newspapers all over California still work years later, the Enterprise Record insists everybody has to subscribe. I’m sorry, journalism is dead.

You’ll just have to hold your nose and read the HR documents, they’re still good.

Of course this move does not save us any money – the city of Chico is trying to convince us we’re still on the hook for these pensions, meanwhile setting up new 401K accounts at the same time. 

We need to bite the bullet and get out of CalPERS, now, and then we need to get rid of these bloated management employees and start over with employees who expect to pay their own freight. 

City of Chico is such a mess – have you been out to South Chico lately? The transient epidemic is a lot worse on the other side of Little Chico Creek. As you drive over the bridge onto Mulberry you see an increasing transient camp on the little triangle of grass and trees that acts as a median. It’s public land, so they move right in, just like Bidwell Park. Meanwhile, the city debates over “the homeless problem,” giving CHAT $28,000 in CBGF money.

These people run “safe shelters” in revolving locations around town, with a lot of secrecy, because they know Chico residents are sick of transient criminals being brought into their neighborhoods through various, unrelated programs.  Their future goal is to get land and house transients in what amounts to sheds, with common toilets, electricity, and running water, all provided by generous donations? No, they’ve got their (expletive) in the Community Block Grant Funding, which is made up of tax dollars. 

In past, CBGF money has gone to organizations like The Opportunity Shop, the Cat Coalition, the Nature Center, the Blue Room – it’s astounding to me how they hand this money out without the kind of scrutiny a sound financial institution would give a borrower. Get a load of CHAT’S “budget” – and think back to the mound of paperwork you had to turn in for your first mortgage. 

Speaking of mortgages, you property tax payers should really sit in on a Finance Committee meeting sometime when they’re forgiving all the rules for somebody who borrowed city money to buy a house and now wants all the rules and requirements forgiven, even the loan itself forgiven. It happens several times a year, watch the agendas. 

You’d think they had a cookie jar without a bottom on it. Oh yeah – that’s US! 





18 Responses to “Notes and observations – ever wonder where all your money goes?”

  1. The Dude June 12, 2018 at 7:57 pm #

    Great post. I noticed that one of those “Safe Shelters” has popped up in my neighborhood. Glad I didn’t buy a house on that block, what a nightmare for the people who did. The people responsible for this are sick.

    • Juanita Sumner June 13, 2018 at 4:53 am #

      I think they should have to notice the neighbors legally. I doubt the mayor or any member of council or management staff would allow one of these anywhere near their home.

  2. bob June 14, 2018 at 10:25 am #

    Better hang on to your wallets. The local politicians are beginning the process that will take even more of your hard earned dollars. It’s like I said a long time ago, the sewer and garbage tax increases were just the beginning.

    Is the Chico City Council going to call on voters to boost city revenues via a sales tax initiative? We can’t predict that outcome, but it’s looking as though the panel is finally going to broach the subject.

    We’ve been keeping tabs on this scenario for many years—and at the next council meeting (Tuesday, June 19), it appears Chico’s leaders are going to at least vote on whether to have a formal discussion about such a measure. That is, they will decide if the topic is worth putting on a future agenda.

    At least the article does point out this

    Why is the money needed? For starters, in the decade leading up the Great Recession, the city was far too generous with employee salaries and benefits, which rose, as we reported in 2007, “by a whopping 161 percent, while the [consumer price index] has increased by just 34 percent, the population by 43.5 percent, and general-fund revenues by 112 percent.”

    Another problem: the specter of increasingly crushing pension obligations, which alone are projected to jump to nearly $10 million annually within five years.

    CNR says they won’t support the sales tax increase but then says this

    Still, we welcome the discussion. Who knows? Perhaps there’s a more palatable way to generate revenue.

    When will CNR ever learn that the lesson is NOT to keep allowing these people to take MORE???

    • Juanita Sumner June 15, 2018 at 9:53 am #

      Thanks Bob I haven’t been able to pay much attention to the local media lately. I am frustrated that while they acknowledged the problem they don’t come down harder. There is a growing movement to get out of Calpers, and if we don’t get out we will pay increasing premiums as other agencies jump ship.

      • bob June 15, 2018 at 4:42 pm #

        Do you think they will try to get this on November’s ballot? Seems if that is their intention they should have started this many months ago.

      • Juanita Sumner June 15, 2018 at 4:49 pm #

        I think the city will ask for a special election in 2019.

      • bob June 15, 2018 at 4:48 pm #

        And this is BS:

        Here’s a little background: For the better part of a decade, local business leaders have been brainstorming a way for the city to generate additional revenues to pay for things like public safety and infrastructure repairs and improvements.

        One, these aren’t business leaders! These are crony rent seekers who have one foot in government and one foot in the private sector like Lando and his consulting scam. How many businesses who aren’t sucking off the public teat want a sales tax increase?

        Second, it’s not about public safety or infrastructure. Their main concern is about the pensions!

      • bob June 15, 2018 at 5:13 pm #

        Here is a great video on the California pension crisis and what can be done. And no, it does not include tax increases like the Chamber of Cronies want.

  3. bob June 15, 2018 at 5:16 pm #

    I think the city will ask for a special election in 2019.

    It will be expensive to hold a special election. The voters ought to be outraged that the local politicians, bureaucrats and rent seekers like Lando would not only demand a tax increase but waste money on the additional cost of a special election. These people should be tarred, feathered and run out of town. They are doing all they can to rip us off!

  4. bob June 15, 2018 at 6:46 pm #

    Since our politicians and bureaucrats are doing such a lousy job getting the potholes fixed let’s get Domino’s Pizza to do it. I am not joking.

    • Juanita Sumner June 16, 2018 at 5:17 am #

      The headline ought to read “Dominos Pizza customers to fix potholes, ” cause that’s who will really pay. A cheap adult campaign for Dominos, while their customers get double billed. What a scam. I’m going to guess the average Dominos customer will never know the difference.

      • bob June 16, 2018 at 7:35 am #

        Unlike the government and taxes, at least Dominos doesn’t force me to buy their pizza. And I’d rather have my money go for a pizza with a little left over to fix a pothole than for Orme’s six figure pension.

      • Juanita Sumner June 16, 2018 at 9:37 am #

        Good point.

      • bob June 16, 2018 at 11:13 am #

        Speaking of taxation you have to see this.

      • Juanita Sumner June 16, 2018 at 12:12 pm #

        I love the comment below where the guy says he entered the word “terrorist” and it was auto-corrected as “Zionist”.

        When I tried to use the microphone on my cellphone to dictate the blog or e-mails it made some pretty hilarious corrections, I’ll have to try my own experiment.

        Is this what Orwell was trying to tell us? Edward Nygma?

      • bob June 16, 2018 at 12:21 pm #

        Did you see the comment about pension fund?

    • bob June 16, 2018 at 12:23 pm #

      Or this one…certainly fits California with its “cap and trade” carbon tax we pay (yet the peasants don’t even realize that).

      I tried “Greenhouse effect” and it gave me “Global Warming”
      Then tried “Global Warming” and it gave me “Climate Change”
      Then I tried “Climate Change” and it gave me “Pay up you peasant slave!”

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