Police Falling To Their Own Excesses

Chris | InformationLiberation
Dec. 29, 2013

How would you like to work for only 30 years, then retire at 50 with a pension that's 90 percent of your salary for life? That's the sweetheart deal police in towns all over California receive, and it's driving city after city into bankruptcy.

From the New York Times:
The city, Desert Hot Springs, population 27,000, is slowly edging toward bankruptcy, largely because of police salaries and skyrocketing pension costs, but also because of years of spending and unrealistic revenue estimates. It is mostly the police, though, who have found themselves in the cross hairs recently.

“I would not venture to say they are overpaid,” said Robert Adams, the acting city manager since August. “What I would say is that we can’t pay them.”

Though few elected officials in America want to say it, police officers and other public-safety workers keep turning up at the center of the municipal bankruptcies and budget dramas plaguing many American cities — largely because their pensions tend to be significantly more costly than those of other city workers.

Central Falls, R.I., went bankrupt in 2011 because its police and firefighters’ pension fund ran out of money. Vallejo, Calif., went bankrupt after more than 20 police officers suddenly retired from its force of 145, fearing that if they waited they would lose their contractual right to cash out their unused sick leave and vacation time; the payouts totaled several million dollars, and Vallejo did not have the money. Miami weathered such a run in September 2010, when 154 police and firefighters retired en masse after city commissioners voted to make it harder to retire before age 50, use intensive overtime to raise pensions, and earn cash payouts.

Here, under the budget enacted last spring, about $7 million of the city’s $10.6 million annual payroll went to the 39-member police force. The situation was so dire that an audit, compiled weeks before municipal elections in November but not made public until later, showed that Desert Hot Springs was $4 million short for the year and would run out of money as early as April 2014.

So at a tense meeting last week, the new City Council voted unanimously to slash all city salaries, including those of the police, by at least 22 percent, as well as to cap incentive pay and reduce paid holidays and vacation days. For some officers who took advantage of overtime and the other extra payments, the cut could be as much as 40 percent, the union says. Management had already taken a hit: the former police chief and one of two top commanders retired this month, not to be replaced.
Will the heroes in uniform sacrifice their bloated pensions and salaries for the taxpayers they claim they want to protect? Of course not, the police union says they're going to sue the city over the "illegal" cuts. Hilariously, they may actually have a case. The same government which is looting taxpayers with these insane salaries and pensions also passed a "law" making it illegal to cut them!

Fortunately, there is no overturning economic law, the money is drying up. For those who complain you were "promised" these insane pensions. Guess what, the people who invested in Bernie Madoff were "promised" lots too, it doesn't make you entitled to it. You invested in this system of mass criminality and looting, it's taken decades to loot the taxpayers for all there is to be looted, but now it's finally approaching the socialist endgame.
Chris runs the website InformationLiberation.com, you can read more of his writings here. Follow infolib on twitter here.

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