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August 23, 2007

Comments

Green Machine

If my home loan company called and wanted to increase the interest rate on my fixed loan I'd tell them to pound sand, I have a contract which you agreed to and I expect you to live by it. The same goes here. Mr. Moorlach is trying to undo an agreement the county made and if it turns out that there is a technical glitch (and I seriously doubt it) then the goal should be to find a way to honor the contract.

There must be some concern in the Moorlach camp if they're already looking to negotiate. Either that or they haven't seen his name in the paper and needed to stoke the fire.

Red Machine

Green Machine,

1) The term of your contract is only 1-3 years, after that it's up for renegotiation. Perhaps you can answer why you don't think you should contribute a penny to pay for your pension?

2) If my government called and wanted to increase my taxes because a deputy sheriff doesn't want to contribute a penny toward his retirement, I'd tell them to pound sand.

3) Maybe Moorlach wants to demonstrate to the public that at a minimal cost these AOCDS members could cover the nut, but because they're so selfish they won't even contribute a minimal amount toward their own generous pension.

Green Machine

Where do you get the idea that I haven't contributed a penny to my retirement? I HAVE! County employees contribute to their retirement plan.

Does your philosophy apply to our military as well? They don't pay into their retirement plan and when they leave active service are entitled to free medical, dental and commissary shopping privileges.

As for your assertion that the contract expired and its up for negotiation, It was NEVER brought up during negotiations...except for when the contract was originally agreed to. And like I said, the county agreed to it then and should have to live up to it.

Red Machine

As it says in Moorlach's sheet, AOCDS members have not contributed to their pension since 2003. Is this incorrect?

Show me the average military retiree that is making a pension of $70,000 a year.

AOCDS is currently in negotiations with the County and has the opportunity to cover the $8 million a year it costs the County to provide this retroactive benefit. Would you be in favor of each AOCDS member paying $3,600 a year to keep that benefit?

confused

most cities/counties pay the safety employee portions of their pensions as an added incentive to get employees, and if you read any of the gigantic signs begging for employees it says so right on it, where everyone can read it, if they read

Green Machine

First, Moorlach's assertion that the deputies haven't paid into their retirement since 2003 is disengenuous. In 2003, the deputies negotiated with the county for a payraise. The county agreed to reduce the payraise and apply the differnce to the retirement fund on behalf of the deputies. That way that dollar amount applied to the retirement benefit did not increase the the base salary of the deputies. In effect, that lowered the amoun t of the money a deputy could factor in to their retirement pay formula. This was a win for the county and actually hides the fact that the deputies pay into their retirment fund. If you check with the OC retirement system you will find that they calculate this dollar amount as money contributed on behalf of the employee.

Second, the average salary of a deputy sheriff retiree is actually $63K, not 70K. But thats irrelevant. Your initial argument wasn't about how much a they make. It was your assertion that they didn't pay into the fund. If you want to compare salaries, then you should know that the Orange County Sheriffs Deputies are near the bottom of the salary range in the county. It makes it very difficult to compete with the likes of Santa Ana PD and Newport Beach.

As you said, AOCDS can negotiate. THEY DID. The county agreed to make the payments back in 2003 and they should do so. You're asking them to re-negotiate yet you overlook the concessions made in previous contracts and discount them. For instance, during the years after the bankruptcy the deputies did not get a single payraise. They sat quietly while their counterparts in city and state agencies continued to recieve payraises. Not everyone stayed. several left for greener pastures and now the deputies who remained loyal and stayed with the county through rough times are being asked to allow the county to reneg on their word.

I don't think so.

Red Machine

Confused,

Then how come since offering "3% @ 50" and paying the entire safety employee portion, the County has lost more employees to retirement than it has been able to hire? Maybe we should pay the starting sheriff $100K? $200K? Where does it stop? Is this really just a simple problem of inadequate compensation?

Red Machine

Moorlach's sheet says that since "3% at 50" was implemented that AOCDS members have received 4% raises every year except one. So let me get this straight, AOCDS members made pre-emptive concessions during the bankruptcy in anticipation that a sweeter pension benefit might be offered at some point in the future? Give me a break.

I'll ask the question again, do you think it is unreasonable to ask a current deputy sheriff who is making, on average $63,000-$70,000 per year OR a "3% at 50" retiree who is making in excess of $70,000 to pay $3,600 (pre-tax) toward his/her pension? Why don't other County employees get the luxury of having their pension costs covered by the County?

confused

City of Orange pays the employee's 9% PERS retirement contribution. City of Irvine indicates they pay 100% the employees cost. Several other indicate the pay from 50% to 100& of the employees PERS costs.

The OCS web site CLEARLY states : Paid Retirement (3% at 50 plan)

IF someone is not paying for something there must be a reason, and not putting that information it where it can be seen is a tactic used to hide the real facts and redirect the attention to a desired direction of misinformation.

Could it be that the AOCDS gave up a raise to get the County to pay it's portion of PERS ? Did they just stop paying it? Why bold that bit of information if your not going to explain it? To misdirect, to incite, to instigate.

If your going to state facts then state the complete fact, and an explanation of your statement would be in order also. While I can agree it SEEMS that something was given away, as I read about it and see the facts coming out, it is obvious that Moorlach is trying to make a Grand Canyon out of a pot hole. a pot hole created by the BOS, because they are the ones with the power, not the AOCDS. And Moorlach has not proven his contention that the 3 rules have been broken, if you read the AB that passed to authorize 3@50 it clearly states retroactive application was authorized and approved, BUT up to the discretion of the implementing agency, I.E. the BOS. Who would have been and has to be held accountable. I don't see this as an issue with the AOCDS, instead this should be an investigation of the actions of the BOS who approved the retroactive portion.

confused

Red,

So where are your facts? Where has there been a problem in hiring? And why? You might see one in the OCS as word gets out that the County can not be trusted to honor it's agreements.......

Green Machine

RM,

The last contract AOCDS negotiated with the county gave the deputies a 3% increase at its inception. It was followed by a 2.5% raise for the next year and 2.5% the for the following year. If you add in the past year without a contract and the year before, Moorlach's numbers are flawed. But of course you're drinking his kool-aid so don't let facts get in the way.

As for your question. No, I don't think AOCDS should have to pay for what they and the county already agreed to. That's what the previous negotiations were for. The county made a bargain with the deputies and I'm sure they didn't do it without concessions in othe areas. It would therefore seem that the deputies are being asked to pay for it twice.

Red Machine

Confused,

Wayne Quint and Sheriff Corona have both stated publicly that they are having trouble recruiting new deputies. You can also ask the Sheriff's Department for their vacancy factor since 3% at 50 was implemented. I think you will find that it has increased from about 3% to nearly 13%. Why would this be? This has only been exacerbated by the fact that more people have retired since 3% at 50 than have been hired. Read Moorlach's sheet for the specific numbers, but it's a simple subtraction problem to see that we've lost more than gained.

Red Machine

GM,

I don't know what contract you're reading but it isn't the one that was approved by the Board of Supervisors in October 2004. In this contract it clearly states that AOCDS members will receive a total raise of 8% over the course of the two years for which the contract is in effect. Go ahead and have another cup of that green Kool-Aid.

And thanks for clarifying your position on whether deputies should contribute to their pension. I doubt the general public that pays your salary will agree with you.

Public Servant

Red, here is a point that I would like to point out.

Let's assume the following:

Service Member who joins the military at age 20 and retires with 20 years service at age 40 at the rank of CPT with 4 years or more enlisted. Base pay is $5716. Retirement is 2.5% for each year of service. Retirement pay is 2858 a month.

Public Safety employee who starts at 20 and leaves after 20 years of service with the same pay.....retirement pay on the OCERS website is 2360 a month.


Red Machine

Servant,

Thanks for providing some facts and numbers to the discussion. Unfortunately you're public safety employee number does not reflect the pension for exclusively those retirees on "3% @ 50." Those retirees who receive the "3% @ 50" benefit actually recieve close to $6,000 a month. Shocking, I know.

Not a math wiz

Now Red I am by no means a math wiz but even a cursory look at the parameters of public servant's example seem to indicate you are even more number challenged than I am. How did you reach a figure of "close to $6,000 a month" for a fictitious "3@50" public safety employee if his base salary prior to retirement was only $5,716.00 ???????

Public Servent

I want to throw some other facts about the military retirement benefits vs public safety employee's.

Military members can elect an HMO plan called Tricare Prime that cost only 460.00 a year for a family or 230.00 for a single member. Military members do not contribute during their working years into this medical plan. It is a lifetime benefit once they retire.

Public Safety members pay several hundred dollars a month for their families health insurance once they retire. They also pay several hundred a month into a fund that is used to offset the cost of medical insurance once they retire.

Here is my soap box. I am a public safety member who also serves in the military reserves. I called myself "public servant" because that is what I chose to do with my life, whether it's serving the residents of Orange County or serving the citizens of our country. I gladly work in these professions and accept the risk that go along with it. I find it ironic however reading post on this blog page , how I am a "scumbag" stealing "tax dollars" and living a lavish lifestyle. I just wish that our elected officials would recognize that the "average" public safety member (firefighter,cop etc) really are good people who will risk it all and put themselves in crummy situations everyday to make sure that the citizens of Orange County enjoy the safe communities that the "pay" for and deserve.

BTW.....when Uncle Sam activated me to active duty for GWOT, my take home pay was higher in the military than it is with my public employer. Go figure?

PD

RM:

You asked the following:

Then how come since offering "3% @ 50" and paying the entire safety employee portion, the County has lost more employees to retirement than it has been able to hire?

The answer--there are at least eight other law enforcement agencies in Orange County that receive better pay than OCSD and also receive 3% @50.

Red Machine

Math Wiz: You're exactly right, I wasn't discussing a hypothetical example. I was using real numbers straight from the Orange County Employees Retirement System for the average "3% @ 50" retiree. $6,000 is the REAL number.

Public Servant: In none of my posts did I suggest that you were a "scumbag" nor that you were "stealing tax dollars." I'm merely pointing out that I believe the "3% @ 50" benefit is too lavish (admittedly this is a personal opinion). Moreover, I find it especially gauling that AOCDS members do not contribute anything toward their pensions. At least if they are going to be able to retire after 25 years at age 50 with 75% of their highest salary, they ought to at least contribute something out of their paychecks to help cover it. The fact that they currently pay nothing is more a reflection of union arm-twisting and intimidation than it is "market forces." I am genuinely curious though, which profession was more stressful to you personally, military combat or County policing?

PD: In terms of total compensation I think you will find that Orange County offers one of the best packages for safety employees not only in Orange County, but in all of Southern California. Moreover, there are innumerable other factors that could be impacting this number such as the Hunt-Carona conflict turning off potential applicants, or simply the fact that the baby boom generation is now moving into retirement and there are fewer people to fill all jobs, not just public safety jobs. My point? Simply that compensation is only one variable among many that is influencing the choices of potential public safety applicants. PD, when you joined law enforcement, did you do so just for the pension? I doubt it. This is just a guess, but I think new deputy sheriffs would much rather have a starting salary of $75,000 instead of $54,000 and a reduced pension. They need the money for mortgages, cars, and college funds. Unfortunately, their union reps are all invested veterans of the force who have an interest in legitimizing the existing lavish pension system.

confused

"I think you will find that it has increased from about 3% to nearly 13%. Why would this be? This has only been exacerbated by the fact that more people have retired since 3% at 50 than have been hired."

Not all AOCDS employees are safety, and that would be how many of the unfilled spots? Of the total safety spots how many are vacant? and how many were allocated and filled before 3@50 ? How many of the 371 retirees had to be replaced? How many of them were replaced with lower paid staff? And the number in the fact sheet there are listed as vacant is 87. And as has been stated, OC pay is not on par with many other cities and counties nearby. How many cannot work for OC because they cannot live in OC? And that big 70,000 dollar salary being blasted around, won't qualify a deputy to buy a house in OC, and barley get a Apartment. And just what was the change in retirement based on the 3@50, what was the previous rate of monthly retirements? and what was the actual rate? did 200 go in the first year (2002)? 100 next (2003)? 71 in the next (2004) and none since? 371 is a very small number, 371/5=74.2 per year for the 5 years since 2002. and the 87 unfilled spots? they are what? .05 % vacancy rate not 13 ---- based on the fact sheet numbers ---- as you suggested

confused

"I think you will find that it has increased from about 3% to nearly 13%. Why would this be? This has only been exacerbated by the fact that more people have retired since 3% at 50 than have been hired."

Not all AOCDS employees are safety, and that would be how many of the unfilled spots? Of the total safety spots how many are vacant? and how many were filled before 3@50 was passed ? How many of the 371 retirees had to be replaced? How many of them were replaced with lower paid staff? And the number in the fact sheet the numbeter listed as vacant is 87. And as has been stated, OC pay is not on par with many other cities and counties nearby. How many cannot work for OC because they cannot live in OC? And that big 70,000 dollar salary being blasted around, won't qualify a deputy to buy a house in OC, and barley get a Apartment. And just what was the change in retirement based on the 3@50, what was the previous rate of monthly retirements? and what was the actual rate? did 200 go in the first year (2002)? 100 next (2003)? 71 in the next (2004) and none since? 371 is a very small number, 371/5=74.2 per year for the 5 years since 2002. and the 87 unfilled spots? they are what? .05 % vacancy rate not 13 ---- based on the fact sheet numbers ---- as you suggested

confused

OC pay is as follows:

Deputy Sheriff Trainee (Academy)
$22.23/hour $46,238/annual

Deputy Sheriff I (Entry Level)
$26.01to $35.36/hour
$54,101 to $73,549/annual

I do not think most start at 70k a year --- as in most jobs they al lstart at lower levels -- UNLESS they were making more someplace else as a safety officer and come here as a promotion -- just like the private sector---

so, your replacing 371 retiees at top of scale with 371 trainee/entry level staff --for a savings of 30-40%.....

now -- LAPD :

The starting base salary for high school graduates is $54,475. If you have at least 60 college units, with an overall GPA of 2.0 or better, you will start at $56,668. (These salaries are as of July, 2006) If you have a BA or BS (four year) degree you will start at $58,881.


San Diego : #T2255 POLICE OFFICER I
*MONTHLY SALARY: $3865 (46,380yr) to $4665 (55,980yr)


Newport Beach :

SALARY:
Recruit: $4,201 (50,412yr) Per Month
Completion of Academy: $4,666 (55,992yr) to $7,982 Per Month (95,784yr)


so, as you can see OC is now the best pie in town -----

PD

RM:

I was hired in 1983 and I have contributed to my retirement. The Sheriff's Department has two tiers, those hired before 1978 and those hired after 1978. Tier 1 retirement is based on their highest one year salary (not including overtime). Tier 2 is based on their highest three years of salary (not including overtime). When you say "highest salary" I believe this misleads readers to think this includes overtime.

Confused

http://blog.ocsd.org/file.axd?file=lecomp.pdf

Confused, OCSD is currently 35,000 per year behind Santa Ana PD, yes 35k. Newport is over 100k, Anaheim will be next year as will HB. Everyone saying retirement is the reason OCSD is having trouble recruiting has there own opinions, but if I can make 30,000 plus somewhere else, doing the same job, where the city counsel support the pd, I will go there.

If OCSD does not get a substantial raise on this contract, you will see even worse recruiting plus experience deputys switching departments...with a signing bonus.

hide

http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-pension24aug24,1,1568324.story?coll=la-headlines-california

Maybe the BOS should wake up --- a million spent and wasted that could have been used for something needed ---- but noooooooo...

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