Laguna Beach, Orange County and California have enormous unfunded pension liability. A large significant portion of this is due to pensions for public safety employees. Chief LaTendresse may be worth his final salary of $279,000 per year, however what is no longer affordable to the taxpayers are pensions of 90% of final salary for their lifetime plus cost of living adjustments.
It is possible that our retired chief will live as long after retirement as he worked (35 years) so his pension may exceed his salary for his entire working career. [279K][.90][35 years]= $8.8 million.
There are three more city employees that are paid more than the chief and many more are in the $150,000-200,000 category. Remember you (taxpayers) will also pay them 90% of final salary at retirement for life.
The old rule was that with a public job you made a little less than the private sector, but had a modest pension. Obviously no longer the case.
As Laguna spends more of the municipal budget on retiree pensions, there is less available for active duty personnel.
States can’t go bankrupt, but municipalities and counties (remember the O.C.bankruptcy?) can. Hopefully the public will get the message before its too late.
George Orff, Laguna Beach