Hello? Hello? Is anybody there? Jerry? Mike? Donna? SDCERS? Scott Lewis? Judge Barton?
What about the Corbett settlement? That’s a year 2000 court settlement that raised employee pension benefits way past 1996 levels as part of the settlement of a lawsuit. (Since I am an elected official, this is the place where I point out I was not in office at that time.) Anyway, the pension lawsuits don’t challenge this settlement agreement, so the 1996 benefits – allegedly awarded for an agreement to underfund – are irrelevant. Roll back 1996 benefits and you’re still stuck with higher 2000 benefits. That leaves only $50 million – out of a $1.4 billion pension debt – to recover in the pension lawsuit by rolling back the 2002 increases, not the $700 million the city attorney promises. And $50 million off the pension debt is worth only about $2 million per year to the annual budget, less than we are burning on legal fees in the pension case!
Let’s assume that the rollback case will be successful. While we’re at it, let’s assume that Israel is getting along famously with Hezbollah and Fox News is right about the global warming hoax. Anyway, why are we hiring every lawyer in town with taxpayer money, kissing our cops goodbye and ripping the city into pieces over $2 million a year, in a city with a $2 billion annual budget? Wouldn’t diplomacy be more effective in this case than firing dangerous explosives with bad aim?
What about the Corbett settlement? Answer me or I’ll boil your rabbit.