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July 22, 2013 | By Ruben Vives and Hector Becerra
The man who boasted California's biggest public pension isn't giving it up without a fight. Bruce Malkenhorst took home more than $911,000 a year as city administrator of the tiny city of Vernon. His reign ended shortly before he was convicted of misappropriating public funds, and he walked away with annual pension that eventually topped $500,000, the largest in the California Public Employees' Retirement System. But CalPERS last year decided to cut his pension down to $115,000, concluding he derived some of his hefty salary improperly.
May 23, 2000
Re "Flawed Social Security Plans," editorial, May 17: Any plan to revise and improve Social Security payouts can only use a very small percentage of the input taxes, and such a plan needs to be developed over time, in the open, by people who have more than their political futures in mind. Al Gore wants an instant fix, not for the good of the country but to give him a target to shoot at for his political gain. George W. Bush is being careful. He has already disclosed that the ultimate plan should not change anything except the way approximately two percentage points of the input may be considered for investment.
September 27, 2012 | By David Zahniser, Los Angeles Times
One day after Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa won a key vote to roll back pensions for newly hired city employees, the president of one of the state's larger private sector unions defended the mayor, saying he is "not the enemy" of workers. For weeks, Villaraigosa's push to raise the retirement age and cut benefits for new civilian employees has drawn fire from Service Employees International Union Local 721, which represents 10,000 city employees. The group — along with five other employee unions — has threatened a lawsuit and repeatedly compared the mayor to Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, a Republican and national lightning rod for union ire over his efforts to take away public employee collective bargaining rights.
October 23, 2012 | By Jeff Gottlieb, Los Angeles Times
A judge has rejected an effort by Bell's former police chief to more than double his pension to $510,000 a year, saying that the City Council never approved his extravagant contract and that city officials tried to keep his salary secret. Randy Adams, who was fired as the city was engulfed in scandal, would have become one of the highest paid public pensioners in California had his request been approved. The cost of doubling Adams' pension would have fallen primarily on Ventura, Simi Valley and Glendale, where he spent most of his career.
May 10, 2008 | From Times Wire Services
Boeing Co. proposed putting newly hired machinists in a 401(k)-style retirement plan to ease a pension liability it estimates at $46 billion. The company's machinists union has said it opposes the proposal, among the most significant concessions Boeing sought as it opened formal talks on a new three-year labor contract. The 26,000 machinists now get a defined-benefit pension that guarantees a portion of their income in retirement. Chicago-based Boeing also wants to restructure machinists' top wage rates, which it says exceed market averages, and reduce healthcare costs.
January 28, 2005
Re "State Workers Wary of Pension Idea," Jan. 23: Proponents of the plan to turn public employee pensions into stock market crapshoots claim Census Bureau figures show that state and local government workers earn more than private-sector workers. Sure, if you compare the salary of a fast-food hamburger flipper or retail clerk with that of a policeman, fireman or government auditor, which is what the Census Bureau did, the public employee probably makes more. The Census Bureau data simply group all these employees as "service workers."
March 12, 2006
"Retirees Said to Need $200,000 for Healthcare" (March 7) hit me particularly hard. I am an 81-year-old retired Los Angeles County employee whose basic healthcare needs are met. I earned my pension and health coverage. But I have many friends and acquaintances who worked at least as hard and as long as I did but who in their golden years are having serious problems making ends meet. Why? Because healthcare in this country is broken, as are the promises of a secure retirement.
September 30, 2010 | By Jeff Gottlieb, Los Angeles Times
Then-City Administrator Robert Rizzo designed a supplemental pension plan for himself and 40 other Bell city officials that will provide them far larger taxpayer-financed retirement packages than previously estimated, according to interviews and documents reviewed by The Times. The supplemental plan was paid for entirely by Bell tax funds. It allowed Rizzo, who was charged last week with public corruption, and other city employees and all City Council members to circumvent retirement limits set by California.
April 8, 2008 | From Times Wire Reports
A Shanghai tycoon has been sentenced to 19 years in prison in a pension funds scandal that toppled the city's Communist Party chief, Chen Liangyu, the official New China News Agency said. Zhang Rongkun was found guilty of bribery, share price manipulation, financial fraud and misuse of public funds, the news agency said. The court also ordered the confiscation of $186 million of Zhang's assets.
June 19, 2005
I take exception to comments by letter writer John Booterbaugh regarding retirement benefits to a retired United pilot, Bob McGowan ("Other United Retirees Worse Off," Letters, June 12). This gentleman worked hard for more than 30 years and earned every dime in his pension. He contributed money he earned to this pension over a decades-long career, and every dime in that pension is money already earned by that man. He deserves the full amount of it, whatever the amount, and taking it away is criminal.
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