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Mayor announces pension reform plan

October 27, 2010 12:00:00 AM PDT
L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa announced a pension reform plan for future civilian city employees that could save the city $1.5 billion over the next 20 years.The plan will raise the minimum retirement age of future employees from 55 to 62, limit compensation to 75 percent of their salaries, and require them to contribute much more to their own pension plans.

This comes after an L.A. City Council vote to draft a ballot measure that would scale back the retirement pay of future officers and firefighters.

City officials say pensions will grow to be 17- percent of the city's general plan over the next five years, and it doesn't stop there.

"When you include the sworn cost that we will also have to pay, we're expecting that within the year 2015, one-third of all of our General Fund dollars will go to pay our pensions," said L.A. City Administrative Officer Miguel Santana.

"The important thing is that employees be treated fairly, that modest pensions be protected, and that the city's financial crisis be directly addressed," said Victor Gordo, Laborers International Union of North America.

Union leaders claim the plan would leave new civilian hires struggling to survive upon retirement.