Almanac

Viewpoint - August 25, 2010

Letter: Judge mulls Menlo's pension-reform case

There is plenty of push-back as California citizens try to rein in a huge budget problem.

In at least three cities, unions have tried to thwart municipal pension reform. In San Francisco and Menlo Park, they have filed lawsuits to keep pension reform off the November ballot. In Hermosa Beach, they filed a lawsuit contesting the right of the City Council to vote on pension reform. If neither the city legislators nor the city's citizens can decide pension issues, who does that leave? City staff and the city workers' union?

We agree with the Menlo Park's city attorney in his response brief on July 23:

"Among the most powerful rights Californians hold is the ability to direct legislation through initiative. With these first principles of California democracy in mind, the court must scrutinize petitioners' extraordinary request to remove from the ballot, prior to an election, an initiative ordinance addressing a matter of enormous concern — public employee pension benefits for future city employees."

Judge George Miram heard the arguments on Aug. 12 and we eagerly await his ruling on whether our effort to rein in Menlo Park city pensions can stay on the ballot in November.

Roy Thiele-Sardina and Henry Riggs, co-chairs, Citizens for Fair and Responsible Pension Reform

Comments

There are no comments yet for this post

Post a comment

Posting an item on Town Square is simple and requires no registration. Just complete this form and hit "submit" and your topic will appear online. Please be respectful and truthful in your postings so Town Square will continue to be a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

We prefer that you use your real name, but you may use any "member" name you wish.

Name: *

Select your neighborhood or school community: * Not sure?

Choose a category: *

Since this is the first comment on this story a new topic will also be started in Town Square! Please choose a category that best describes this story.

Comment: *

Verification code: *
Enter the verification code exactly as shown, using capital and lowercase letters, in the multi-colored box.

*Required Fields