Coalition Supports Pension Reform
The Glendale Coalition for Better Government is encouraged by the op-ed piece penned by Councilwoman Paula Devine and welcomes her objective for pension reform. It takes courage to make the hard choices and right a wrong that has handicapped city finances, compromised city goals and muted city aspirations.
Unsustainable pension costs have eroded Glendale’s financial options. We are constantly reassessing laudable objectives that we aspired to, such as saving and protecting Rockhaven, and succumbing to selling property for cash. We are continually subjected to chronic budget deficits and layoffs of our employees to meet pension obligations. We have, and continue to, compromise aesthetics and quality-of-life objectives we had set for ourselves in search of cash (i.e., billboards and cell towers). Some argue the loss of redevelopment and the recession, but those factors have come and gone. The pension problem remains and will continue.
The Coalition urges council members to support Councilwoman Devine in her goal for comprehensive long-term pension reform. It is time to eliminate politics from the calculus of retirement benefits and build a long-term comprehensive system based on data, finance, and current actuarial figures. Let’s build a system that stands for retirement benefits that provides reasonable, sustainable benefits to all our employees. One that does not segregate our employees and burden the city finances.
The coalition stands ready to provide the support and citizen involvement to accomplish our common goal of building a thriving and flourishing Glendale for now and the future.