Staff trying to get their pensions bond under the wire by end of January

31 Dec

Next Tuesday city council will hear a presentation on a Pension Obligation Bond. They are trying to slide it under the wire as “restructuring debt,” which is really deceptive – they don’t mention the part where they take on millions in NEW DEBT.  This is really dirty and sneaky, and you need to let your council members know, you know what they’re up to. You can contact them directly through the clerk’s office – debbie.presson@chicoca.gov – or you can go to Chico Engaged. I’d recommend both.

Here’s the link to the agenda:

https://chico-ca.granicusideas.com/meetings/351-1-slash-5-slash-21-city-council-meeting/agenda_items

And here’s the POB presentation:

https://chico-ca.granicusideas.com/meetings/351-1-slash-5-slash-21-city-council-meeting/agenda_items/5fe748e0f395e716e400a434-5-dot-1-calpers-pension-costs-and-ual-restructuring-p

I also wrote a letter to the editor. Staff is trying to  get this thing done within the next two meetings, let’s stop it in it’s  tracks. 

Also, get a load of Coolidge’s request for a “streets bond”! 

https://chico-ca.granicusideas.com/meetings/351-1-slash-5-slash-21-city-council-meeting/agenda_items/5fe748e1f395e716e400a439-5-dot-6-mayor-coolidge-request-bond-for-improvement

Here’s my letter about the POB:

January 5, Chico City Council will consider Pension Obligation Bonds. Staff calls it “restructuring pension debt/Unfunded Actuarial Liability”, but it’s really millions in new debt. A new twist on the old Shell Game, Staff will invest borrowed money in the stock market, hoping to make enough to pay both the pension debt and the new debt. If their investments fail,  the taxpayers will be forced to pay not only the pension debt but the new bond debt, at the expense of city infrastructure and basic services.

Over the last couple of years,  surveys, letters to the editor, and comments on social media have demonstrated two main concerns: lack of law and order, and lack of maintenance to public infrastructure.  While Staff has claimed they don’t have enough money for either, they’ve continued to appropriate more money each year from city departments into the Pension Stabilization Trust – this year, $11.4 million, roughly 20% of tax revenue.  

Furthermore, even with 10’s of millions a year paid through payroll and the PST, the UAL has still grown, up from $126,000,000 only a few years ago to $146,000,000. Staff has recently revealed another $140,000,000  interest. This is the result of insufficient  contributions from employees, and poor returns from CalPERS investments. 

The Government Finance Officers Association says POBs are dangerous without a plan to manage pension costs. Instead, our city has increased pension costs through new hires and overly-generous salaries, without demanding more from Staff. 

The GFOA also determined POBs were the cause of bankruptcy in San Bernardino and Stockton. 

Juanita Sumner, Chico CA

 

4 Responses to “Staff trying to get their pensions bond under the wire by end of January”

  1. Scott Rushing December 31, 2020 at 10:55 am #

    Commentary *C**hico does not need more gun-toting police. The city needs quality policing, not quantity. Most of the police work in Chico can be completed by “Community Service Staff” Employees to respond to the majority of crime calls **at a fraction of the cost. Read the police plotter for a month. Police are reacting to and investigating misdemeanors such as graffiti, tire slashing, bike theft, noisy neighbors, spousal fights, AFTER THE FACT! CPD officers are not preventing crime. They are responding to complaints. Use of Community Service Staff reduces payroll, pension obligations, and increases response time to complaints, and therefore frees up gun-toting cops for crime-fighting. The answer is simple. Why won’t the council and Manager Orme do the right thing? Is the police union obstructing solutions that lessen their power? Does the police union and Orme care about doing the right thing for the taxpayers? Ask yourself. *

    On Thu, Dec 31, 2020 at 6:15 AM Chico Taxpayers Association wrote:

    > Juanita Sumner posted: ” Next Tuesday city council will hear a > presentation on a Pension Obligation Bond. They are trying to slide it > under the wire as “restructuring debt,” which is really deceptive – they > don’t mention the part where they take on millions in NEW DEBT. This i” >

    • Juanita Sumner January 1, 2021 at 7:07 am #

      I asked myself – NO, they don’t do the right thing, they do what they do to protect their own salaries and benefits packages. We need a NEW CITY MANAGER. We need better cops, we don’t need more cops. And we need to get more out of the county Behavioral Health Dept, which has almost $100 million budget garnered from bringing mental patients and drug addicts into our county. Frankly, if I were having a family dispute, the last people I would call would be the Chico PD.

      thanks Scott!

      • bob January 1, 2021 at 7:43 am #

        Well, don’t get your hopes up. Remember, the corrupt special interests control this little city.

    • bob January 1, 2021 at 7:41 am #

      “Police are reacting to and investigating misdemeanors such as graffiti, tire slashing, bike theft, noisy neighbors, spousal fights, AFTER THE FACT!”

      They hardly do even that.

      If you’re a victim of crime you find out in a hurry how ineffective the Chico PD is. For theft and vandalism they are useless. They won’t even come out and take a police report or even take one over the phone. You have to do it yourself online. And then they do nothing with it. The only reason for you to file a police report online is because your insurance company will require a police report for you to file a claim.

      The Chico PD will never catch the criminals or recover your stolen property. And when they do nothing they have the nerve to warn you not to do their job. And we the taxpayers have to pay them six figure compensation packages and multi-million dollar pensions.

      It’s disgusting.

      Police exist to protect the government and politicians, not me or you. They exist to provide a very minimal level of order so the tax cattle can keep paying those taxes.

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