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L.A. Now Live: Discuss audit of school pensions, 'spiking'

September 6, 2012 |  7:18 am

The Times' Sacramento reporter, Patrick McGreevy, will join L.A. Now Live to discuss a recent audit by Controller John Chiang's office that found that California's teacher retirement system does not take adequate measures to prevent pension "spiking."

The live chat is scheduled for 9 a.m. Thursday. Questions may be submitted live.

The audit, which was released Wednesday, also found that the system missed opportunities to reduce such abuses by insufficiently auditing benefits.

Part of the problem, Chiang said, is that the California State Teachers' Retirement System — the largest in the nation — hasn't taken full advantage of electronic warning systems designed to identify problems.

Auditors in Chiang's office spotted raises of up to 26% for retiring executives in the San Francisco and San Diego school districts without enough documentation to justify the end-of-career boosts.

The review was released a few days after the Legislature sent Gov. Jerry Brown a proposal to curb spiking by basing retirement benefits on the average salary in an employee's three best years rather than on their final pay.

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