On December 30th, 2013

Attack on Retirement Security Judge Blocks Cutting Pensions

A Santa Clara County Superior Court judge delivered a blow to San Jose's voter-approved Measure B on Monday, December 23.  Measure B is designed to cut workers' pensions.

Judge Patricia M. Lucas released a tentative decision in a lawsuit by the San Jose Police Officers' Association.  The decision declares unconstitutional the City of San Jose's move to increase employee pension contributions and to slash retirement benefits.

The California Statewide Law Enforcement Association (CSLEA ) and public employee associations throughout the state are watching this case closely as it may impact the latest attempt by San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed to cut public employee pensions statewide. 

"CSLEA and a large coalition of public safety associations are on the frontlines of this battle to fight for and defend retirement security," said CSLEA President Alan Barcelona.  "It is unfair to take away what our members have gone to work every day for, to earn a secure retirement.  We're talking about people who spend their careers enforcing  the laws in public safety and consumer protection.  Our safety and health depends on them."

On October 15, San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed filed paperwork for a proposed statewide ballot initiative that would change California's constitution to allow public employees' pensions to be changed prospectively. This new pension initiative, The Pension Reform Act of 2014, backed by an out-of-state billionaire, would allow public employers to reduce retirement benefits, both pension and health, for current employees.  The reductions could be made without  the collective bargaining process.

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