Almanac

News - March 31, 2010

Menlo Park police chief to retire June 1

by Dave Boyce

After 28 years in blue and having worked his way up to the top job in the Menlo Park Police Department, Chief Bruce Goitia has announced in a March 29 statement that he will retire, effective June 1.

In retirement, Mr. Goitia will be paid at least $125,000 a year — 75 percent of $166,650, his highest and current salary, said city Personnel Director Glen Kramer.

His retirement pay is calculated by multiplying his total years of service as a sworn officer (about 25 years, Mr. Kramer said) times 3, and using the result (75) as the percentage to determine the annual payout. To be eligible, the officer must be at least 50 years old. Mr. Goitia is 54.

Mr. Goitia can increase his retirement pay by buying credit for up to five additional years, an option available to all sworn officers, Mr. Kramer said. The price for a year of credit varies, he said, and is determined for each individual by CalPERS, the state's pension fund authority.

Mr. Goitia was not available for an interview.

Mr. Goitia began his career in 1982 as a part-time records clerk and, in 1986, became a full-time police officer, followed by promotions to traffic officer, traffic sergeant, detective sergeant and, in 2002, commander, according to a department chronology.

Mr. Goitia has a master's degree in public administration from the Notre Dame de Namur University in Belmont, the department statement said.

His term as chief began in May 2006 after several months of sharing the top job with Commander Terri Molakides while the city manager conducted a candidate search for a new chief. He was chosen from a field of 40 candidates, including 20 from places other than California, according to an earlier Almanac story.

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