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Bell pension reform measure fails to get support of Democrats and dies in committee vote

A proposal to strip public pensions from city and state officials convicted of misusing taxpayer money died in a state Senate committee Monday after some lawmakers and interest groups said it was too severe.

The measure by Sen. Tony Strickland (R-Moorpark) was a response to criminal corruption charges filed against some former city administrators and council members in the city of Bell. Strickland’s proposal would have extended the same pension sanctions to city and state managers that already apply to elected officials and judges.

Two Republicans voted for the bill, but no Democrats did. The Democrats agreed with associations representing firefighters, school employees and state supervisors, which said the measure could harm family members who had done nothing wrong.

Strickland had proposed in Senate Bill 115 that public officials convicted of certain felonies involving their public jobs starting next year forfeit their pensions and have their own contributions to their pension funds returned to them.

-- Patrick McGreevy

Comments () | Archives (16)

While it may be a good idea to strip those INVOLVED of misdeeds, how on earth can you take benefits including pensions, from those that had no participation or knowledge of what was going on?

Hammer those that deserve it, but leave those alone who are innocent.

i guess there are a lot of criminals in the legislature, they are looking out for their own selves. give us the names of all the no voters!

So, according to Jay and the Democrats it's perfectly okay for the convicted to benefit from their misdeeds through their families? The statement that the measure might harm family who had no part or knowledge of the events. However, what is neglected is that they also benefited from the misdeeds. I guess I would expect the Democrats start the process to modify the policies of the IRS who believe taxes owed will be paid no matter what harm it causes to family members. Oh wait, that would be the other liberal leg that can't be touched. It's the government's money not yours.

Public service officials / personnel have a new catch phrase...
and you the california taxpayers are paying more and more for
their crimes...
on the public payroll...public service crime .

Say what Jayzee1? So by your logic, if I rob a bank and give the stolen cash it to my unknowing family they should keep the cash. Ridiculous if thats the logic tho that does seem to be what the democrats are saying. Of course its perfectly ok to tax us all more and "legally" take more of our hard earned cash. Hopefully I misunderstand....

It would be easy to just tar and feather them....

I don't recall many people suggesting that Madoff's wife get to keep his ill-gotten gains simply because she didn't know what is going on.
If someone cheats on their federal income taxes, does the government look the other way b/c it may negatively impact the tax cheat's family?
Of course, those who misappropriate taxpayer funds or were convictedshould lose their pensions! It's absurd to suggest otherwise. No wonder this state is failing.

Just your average Democrat, doing what Democrats do. After all, wasn't Bell's city council entirely peopled by Democrats?

"A proposal to strip public pensions from city and state officials convicted of misusing taxpayer money died in a state Senate committee Monday after some lawmakers and interest groups said it was too severe." C'mon guys, this is a no-brainer. If a public official gets convicted of public corruption, part of the punishment should include relinquishment of all public benefits because that public official breached the public trust. How is that too harsh? If you want to receive the government's contribution to your pension when you retire, don't steal. How is that too much to ask?

If somebody robs a bank and kills someone, should we take away his wife's Social Security rights away from her?

Perhaps the pensions could be reduced by the amount that the employee was unjustly enriched, but the family shouldn't be punished. If it can be shown that the spouse knew, than the pension could be canceled, but the showing must be made.

I am outraged! These criminals should NOT be allowed to keep their bloated ill gotten pensions! This isn't over by a long shot! I am so angry I could spit! This just tells me that there is much more corruption in our elected officials than anyone could have guessed. I want the names of those voting no released. We'll look into their finances and see what they are hiding.

Are you kidding me? Then nobody should go to prison as it would disrupt the econmics of the "innocent" family. Public servants don't "become" criminals, CRIMINALS become public servants. Not all backgrounds are conducted, if at all, with quality and thoroughness. Most corruption is pre-disposed, therefore, they should not be entitled to a pension, and should pay back the salary they received since the corruption began.

No one convicted of bilking the city out of anything should receive a pension. It boggles the mind that Sacramento can't see that! What? They get pensions for stealing from taxpayers? Hey, wait; Sacramento is in on it, too! There's a surprise!

Can we make this a ballot measure so we can take this out of the hands of the corrupt legislature?
They should not be allowed to vote on something that directly affects them it is the definition of conflict of interest!

I am a State Govt worker and this is just so wrong & sickening that it's almost ridiculous. Many of us govt workers are actually hardworking and honest and support reforms that are fair & needed - LIKE THIS ONE. How can we get you maniacs to stop hating and attacking us if we wont even support easy commonsense reforms like this?

I believe that when any state employee is found guilty of misusing taxpayer funds. That they should be deny collecting any benefit from retirement. They should be reinburse the money they put in to retirement and nothing more. Also they are responsible for their families and making the decision for their actions, not the taxpayers. I am in agreement with Sen. Tony Strickland purposed Senate Bill 115 and very disappointed it has been rejected. It seems we are always rewarding wrong doings this does need to stop.


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