October 29, 2014

The California Policy Center (CPC) used stale data from 2013 in its Sacramento Bee commentary "Big pensions drive proposed tax increases on CA ballots" and never bothered to check with CalPERS (or even media coverage) to learn that the pension data was no longer accurate. Bruce Malkenhorst, former City Manager of Vernon, no longer receives his half-million dollar pension. Earlier this year CalPERS slashed his benefit to approximately $10,000 a month in April from its peak of more than $45,000 a month, concluding he derived the benefit improperly from the salary set by his employer the City of Vernon. CalPERS is also seeking to recover overpaid assets from Malkenhorst. While members earning more than $100,000 per year in pensions receive high publicity, the fact is they only represent 2.6 percent of CalPERS retiree payments. It would be helpful if the CPC and others would more carefully check the facts and report on the full picture instead of just painting all public employees with the brush of the likes of Malkenhorst.

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