Los Angeles City Councilmember Bill Rosendahl applauded Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Council President Herb Wesson in calling for pension reform for new employees to help save the City billions of dollars over the next several years.
“I am thrilled that we are finally taking action on pension reform – an issue I have been raising since 2005,” said Rosendahl, who sits on the City’s Budget and Finance Committee. ”It is in the best interests of City employees and constituents that we reform our pension system, contribute more to our own pensions, and invest in ourselves and the future of Los Angeles. We cannot afford more layoffs or additional cuts in vital City services. This is a smart move for all of Los Angeles.”
The remark comes on the heels of a press conference Wednesday morning organized by the Mayor and Council President to discuss a pension reform plan that will help put the city on a long-term fiscally sustainable path. The two leaders were joined by Councilmembers Tom LaBonge, Dennis Zine, Mitch Englander, and Joe Buscaino. The City Council is expected to take up the pension issue next week.
Rosendahl did not attend the news conference due to a previously scheduled appointment for his cancer treatment.
According to an analysis done by the City Administrative Officer, the plan will save the City $3.9 – 4.3 billion over 30 years.
“Some will say this plan goes too far, others will say it doesn’t go far enough,” said Mayor Villaraigosa. “But I believe this is the right plan for Los Angeles because it finds the middle ground. That middle ground will allow us to provide retirement stability to our employees who have earned it and it will allow the City to continue providing a level of service that Angelenos expect and deserve.”
Some of the key components of the plan include: increase the Retirement Age from 55 to 65, cap the Maximum Retirement Allowance at 75 percent, and reduce the Retirement Factor from 2.16 percent to 2 percent.
The pension reform proposal is only the latest initiative in a series of steps that the City has taken to become more fiscally responsible.
The City Administrative Officer has a report on the alternatives for pension reform here.