Average Orange County public employee pension is 88% of final salary

By Barry Levinson | This is according to an article on the UnionWatch website written by Robert Fellner on July 20, 2014.

The reason all taxpayers should be outraged by the final percentage of retirement income vs. final pay for OCERS retirees is simple.

The taxpayer cannot afford to pay these public servants that kind of retirement money. It may be called a pension, but in reality part of it is simply welfare created by the unions’ cozy relationship with so many of our elected officials. A pension benefit should be earned and paid for by the contributions of the employees with a matching contribution by the employer/taxpayer and nothing more.

As someone who has studied and worked in the financial field my entire life, I wish there was a financially prudent way to afford these lavish pensions. There is only one way to do this and that would be to have each and every public employee pay at least 30 – 50% of his or her gross salary into the pension fund. Of course that will never happen, but that is exactly what we the taxpayer’s are facing now or will face in the near future without a major reduction in public retirement benefits.

For instance, in 2012 I reviewed the employer cost for the Fullerton, California safety workers (police and fire). The employer portion (which in public service means the taxpayer) was scheduled to be over 40% and rising. This is not fair to the taxpayer. Most of the taxpaying public makes less in salary than our police and fire employees, and could only dream of getting any pension let alone 88% of final salary.

Let me state something plain and simple. Those public union bosses are self-centered, selfish people who do not really care about the financial well being of all those taxpayers who have paid for their incredibly generous benefits and very healthy salaries as well.

The question that must be asked is the following: When will those public employee unions stop their conflict of interest campaigns of supporting only agreeable candidates for office and start acting like true public servants who actually care about the communities they are supposed to serve?

[Editor’s Note: To view the pension data for all of Orange County’s 12,273 retired employees on TransparentCalifornia.com, please click here.]

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