Thirty-one retired El Dorado County employees now rake in six figures in CalPERS benefits, with two people making more than $200,000.
These defined benefits are practically bankrupting the county.
This is taxpayer money being paid to people who aren’t doing anything for the county any more.
The county’s unfunded obligation to its retirees is a major problem. In 1999 and 2000, against the recommendation of Auditor-Controller Joe Harn, the Board of Supervisors changed its contract with CalPERS, providing a significant increase in retirement benefits to employees and dramatically increasing the county’s unfunded obligation to CalPERS.
“CalPERS now acknowledges that the $230 million unfunded obligation is grossly understated and will continue to grow because CalPERS continues to ask the county to make its retirement program payments using overly optimistic actuarial assumptions,” Harn said in a statement. “In 2016, CalPERS informed the county that the annual amount due CalPERS will increase approximately $4 million per year for the next three fiscal years. The cumulative negative effect on our budget over the next three fiscal years is $24 million. This will make balancing the county budget and providing critical public safety and road maintenance services very difficult.”
Harn released the numbers this week.
In 2011, only 16 retirees collected benefits in excess of $100,000.
Sixteen of the 31 retirees worked for the sheriff’s department, including two sheriffs. Other retired elected officials netting six figures are an assessor and a surveyor.
Many former county employees also received subsidized health insurance benefits, Harn noted.
Here is the CalPERS retiree list.
— Lake Tahoe News staff report