Friday, March 23, 2018

City Council spikes firefighter pensions again, this time by 11.5%

City press release:
At its March 21, 2018 meeting, the Encinitas City Council approved a new four-year contract with the Encinitas Firefighters' Association. This replaces the previous contract which expired on December 31, 2017.

Effective Date
Base Pay Increase
Cost Sharing Increase
Net Increase
March 16 ,2018*
3.5%
1.5%
2.0%
January 1, 2019
3.0%
1.0%
2.0%
January 1, 2020
2.5%
0.5%
2.0%
January 1, 2021
2.0%
0.0%
2.0%

The median firefighter pay was already $138,000 in 2016, and $183,000 including benefits.

The effect of the cumulative 11.5% increase in base pay is an 11.5% increase in future pension benefits and costs, while the "cost-sharing increase" minimizes the impact to the current council's budget. The council could have just given firefighters the straight 2% cost of living increase without using the "cost-sharing" gimmick to spike pensions even further.

Encinitas' pensions remain severely underfunded despite the decade-long stock market rally.

Meanwhile, the Encinitas $100,000 pension club already has 20 members.

67 comments:

  1. Well, there is an election coming up. And you know how City Councilmembers love those "first responder" union endorsements. Looks like the bribe has now been paid.

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    1. Time to dump these current council people - they are in the pockets of the special interests.

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    2. Muir usually sends his political tripe out at the last minute. Yea, he'll tout the "safety" pitch and the "make Encinitas a better place" type of generalities. And it generally works.
      He needs to go.

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    3. Who in the engineering/planning department received a $20,000 boost in their salary in yesterday's Council meeting?

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  2. Bribe? What are you talking about. The people of Encinitas elected the decision makers to represent us. I for one am tired of you naysayers trying to blame the employees for the leaders sins. They deserve what ever they can get. If there has been a "Bribe" show us the evidence and then take it to the district attorney. If you can't shut up.

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    1. Okay whatever princess. See, fire princess can’t even put one and one together. Only job where you can be a high school flunky and still get paid big time.

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    2. 7:27 can't handle the truth.

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    3. Flaw in 7:27's argument. The City Councilmember who needs that endorsement the most was not elected.

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    4. Here's how it works, 7:27: when those elected no longer represent us, they are shown the door. The four may be elected right now, but represent voters? Pffffft.

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    5. Until they are not your electeds, they are your electeds. Rabble, rabble, rabble. That's from South Park, old people.

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    6. what an idiot. You watch and quote South Park cartoons as your source?

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    7. 1:54, does not mean I don't get to complain. I didn't vote for any but one sitting, btw.

      If you don't like folks calling out the council for votes that contradict the platforms they ran on, skip reading the call outs. The truth hurts. You must be in constant pain.

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  3. And this is why they are packing in the housing, to buy votes with your tax dollars. Our fire princesses deserve a pay cut. Fire fighters make good money because they risk their lives. Our princesses won’t even risk getting their hands dirty. Look at all the burned down houses. Replace them with drones.

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    1. what burned down houses, specifically? Also, do you think that's all these folks do? Do you drive? Ever seen an auto accident in Encinitas? A pedestrian struck? An elderly person trapped after a fall? I've personally seen all of those things in our town, including watching Encinitas FF's risk dying in an explosion to cut a driver from an overturned car that was leaking gas on El Camino Real.

      You're a Keyboard Kommando, nothing more.

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    2. Two houses, total losses, both on Mckinnon. They watched them burn down. They are in between two new fire princess castles that cost us tens of million of dollars. I have seen cops pull people out of cars and rescue old ladies but they make half as much. I have seen paramedics, 30k/yr, saves lives in accidents while fire princess watched. I have also seen one of oir fire princess protesting on an overpass and causing a traffic jam standing besides The racist Rodger Ogden, while in uniform. Another fire princess illegally rents out the, not up to code, garage in his second home in Cardiff.

      Sorry fire princess, you are part of the problem, not a solution. A volunteer fire department would be more effective than what we have, contracting out services would be better than what we have. Fire princesses here take turns working all the overtime in one year to inflate their pensions. One of the reasons why city staff is hell bent on adding more unaffordable housing, stack and pack, to bring in more income to support fire princess pensions and toys that they don’t need.

      They don’t need a raise, we need our streets repaired, sidewalks build or even finished, infrastructure upgrades, etc.

      Specific enough for you? Are you a fire princess or just uniformed? Or just dumb?

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  4. Sounds like a government taker doesnt like to her the truth

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  5. Actually, the voters didn't elect Joe Mascara

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  6. Drones, ambulance services, volunteers, prisoners....there are many other ways to fight fires and handle medical calls than to pay firefighters $183,000 a year to mostly wait for calls while they eat, sleep, watch tv, and shop for groceries.

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    1. Prisoners? That's rich. You'd probably bitch about the effect of their ethnicity on your property values. You may want a volunteer stanching your severed arteries, but if I get plowed into on the 5, I want a professional responding.

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  7. Our fire people are highly trained professionals. The problem is that their compensation is completely out of wack with the real world. 80K/yr + a 5% match on the 401K contribution would be more realistic and fair to the folks paying the bill (US).

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  8. Pipe DOWN you little ingrates. We are Hero's. DID YOU HEAR ME. Hero's! And don't any of you college educated professionals who have gone to school for 4-15 years and are barely cracking the $100K mark ever forget that. I went to the Fire Academy and received CPR training, I am almost a doctor. I put my LIFE on the line just YESTERDAY rescuing a baby kitten out of a 12 foot tree, now THAT is real risk. Here, this is MY life, remember that!
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EmC26RuO26g

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  9. Makes me want to vomit. 5 more years and I'm leaving this state, can't come soon enough.....

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    1. Why wait five years? Go now.

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    2. Somebody has to pay the taxes, boo boo.

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  10. Time for Muir to go - he is not fiscally responsible and is part of the problem.

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  11. Big Time. Muir gone and lets reduce fire princesses in 1/2 and get volunteers to do all the sleeping, shopping, movie watching and eating at the station.

    Unbelievable.

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  12. Ripped off again.

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  13. It never ceases to amaze me that at least one old fogie here is so sure that being a firefighter is all about sleeping and shopping. Tell me, oh brave soul, how exactly do you volunteer to put your life on the line for a paycheck, let alone to do so purely to save the lives of others. When the biggest threat to your life comes from your time behind the wheel of a car, you've lost your right to complain about how much the person cutting you from it gets paid.

    Drones? Yeah, sure. Drones.

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    1. put your life on the line for a paycheck?

      I put my life on the line as much as you- I go to the grocery store, I jog, I watch movies on the big screen tv, I work out, and I sleep.

      the only difference is I dont get $180k per year to do it. And all this shit about two 24 hour shifts with 8 hours OT is bullshit.

      The whole fire princess scam has to be exposed and address.

      Its total fucked for the taxpayers.

      Just to any local beach and you will find the best breaks packed with current and retired fire princesses. Why?

      The have a shit load of time off and barely work.

      Fuck that. I wonder if the taxpayer Joe will ever wake up?

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    2. Fire princess logic.... “how exactly do you volunteer to put your life on the line for a pay check”. It’s not volunteering if you are a 200k per year tax payers leech. No logic classes in princess school?

      Plenty of people would happily cut someone out of a car for 50k per year and be on call and ready to go 24/7. Fire princess logic dictates you must be paid PhD money for AA education or we all die trapped in the one car that flips a year in Encinitas. Doesn’t take a team of 200k/yr princesses to spray a little fire retardant and pull the trigger on a tool. In fact, plenty of people would do the job far a quarter of what you are paid and contribute more to the community while doing it. Going even further, you could give everyone in Encinitas a fire suit, bucket of water and a helmet, that would be more effective than what we have and cost less.

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    3. Wow, tough life. Let's talk daily hazards, shall we? In addition to my hellish commute to UCSD every morning (rear-ended four times in ten years) I'm working on a cure for cancer and make about $225,000 per year.

      Yesterday I spent 6 hours working with this https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Calicheamicin . It's one of the most dangerous molecules known to man, and I had enough of it in my hands to kill 45,000 people. I could be making the next wrinkle cream, so I'm volunteering to risk my life every day.

      Notably, I didn't have time to jog or work out, and I don't watch TV. Must be nice to have bitching be your main activity.

      As too FF's physical fitness regimes, I'm 6'3" and weigh 220 pounds, so I want my firefighters in excellent shape so they can pull me from wreckage or haul my unconscious ass out of a burning or collapsed building. You're obviously burdened by a head full of rocks, so I'd think you share these concerns.

      I also want them well-rested. If you knew anything about circadian biology, you'd know how sleep cycles affect performance and how interrupted sleep and shift work are toxic over time. But that probably doesn't matter to you because you'd think it just fine to put FF's on Obamacare.

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    4. More of that failed logic again. Nobody cares what you do or how dangerous your work is, fire princess don’t risk breaking a nail around here. You are not a volunteer if you are getting paid. Why is that so hard for you to understand?

      I seem to more about biology than you do. One, over 200k in pay does not cure lack of sleep. Two, some vitamin c crystals and water makes for a better wrinkle cream than you will ever make and does not involve dangerous chemicals. Enjoy your short life span, idiot. All to try to sell overpriced cream. I swear, chemist think they are so damn smart but end up with a life of health problems and for what?

      You missed the point completely, I seriously question your logic and reading comprehension.

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  14. I'll never forget the 3 firefighters at Ace hardware downtown Encinitas arguing over which broom to buy.....all on the taxpayers dime. Each carrying their own radio....
    PS-what happened to all the monies collected during the "Fill the Boot" Campaign after 9-11??

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    1. They spent it at Vons.

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  15. Good Job EU for reporting this full frontal raping of the Encinitas Tax payer.

    Frickin Enc Fire Ps why over the top

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  16. Dont forget about the City Managers. Current one is trying to limp by the next 2 to 3 years so she can get her fat $250k per year forever.

    Unbelievable. To bad City Council doesn't demand the City address the pension issue. You know the CM wont bring it up, because its against her own financial benefit.

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    1. She can't bring it up until the council directs her to do so. But you knew that, 10:29.

      And you still haven't told us what she to you to make you go after her all the time. Not going to get that pension after all, are you?

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    2. Did you double check your math, 11:52 PM? Is it really $250,000 per year forever? Break it down for everyone.

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  17. 11:22-

    Delusional ? Psychotic ?

    Hope you get some help .

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    1. Answer the question. You've been at her all over EU. She works at the council's direction, so what is your personal beef with her?

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    2. Delusional for sure.

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    3. Fired for sure. Good.

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    4. Sorry. Just a concerned resident that or city is mismanaged. Brust is as bad as vina unfortunately for us taxpayers and citizens.

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    5. I totally agree. And I will be voting against all council members supporting this mismanagement

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    6. Brust does what's she's directed to do. Change the council and (hopefully) change instructions to Brust. I know you know this, 8:00, but for reasons you've yet to explain, you've got it in for Brust.

      I'm repeating it for the umpteenth time for the folks watching.

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    7. If Brust performed it would be great. Encinitas deserves a City manager that can perform well and bring to the city Council solid recommendations.

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    8. Performing well = meeting management's expectations. Check box.

      Bringing "solid recommendations" to the Council = give us your proof she has not done this.

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    9. A ridiculously failed housing element that was soooo poor the public swished it. It took the Mayor to step in to try and come up with a some what reasonable plan. Staff's attempt was pathetic under Brust's efforts.

      Staff cators to bars owner and developers as more bars are causing more drunks and hit and runs.

      Ater 10 years and counting - still no progress towards a City Quiet Zone - Remember Gaspar and Barth used to argue about who was the founder of getting a quiet zone - Geus what neither under the do nothing City Hall management.

      Streetscape - Ha. Under her lead, staff tried to kill it with that pathetic EIR written by the same firm that did that shitty design that ignored the surrounding community.

      The list goes on and on and on. If you think the City Council is to blame- Ask them of they want a successful housing plan, more or less bars and drunk problems, a quiet zone and a successful streetscape. Yeah - I'd say their direction is clear.

      I think think their is a lack of capability in accomplishing City Council goals.

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    10. You are seriously lacking in your daily dose of reality if you don't think the Council catered to developers on the housing plan, catered to business owners on the going bar issue, and catered to both developers and business owners on streetscape (can't comment on quiet zone).

      Council has endured (and I do mean "endured, by their blank stares; Barth even called residents "obstructionists) endless hours of direct public testimony on all I mentioned and still went full speed ahead against residents in every case. Council heard objections with their own ears and ignored us, instead praising staff - including the city manager - for their supposed expertise.

      The city manager works "at the pleasure of the council," as former, kicked-to-the-curb city manager Vina told residents. Don't like what Brust's not getting done? Give your list to the Council. Then let us know how far you get.

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    11. I let my vote do the talking for me. No progress on key projects, I vote against the incumbent

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  18. There are remote operated vehicles that can do everything a firefighter can do even better. I would rather pay for a fleet of these and then pay the few operators good money to maintain them and operate them. They makes ones that can go into o a burning house, like a mini tank with a hose. They make ones that can fly while connected to a hose. There are even ones that can rip open steel in temps people would melt. Best thing about drones... then don’t need a pension and don’t get overtime.

    Is it even legal to collude with other employees to take turns raking in overtime to boost your pension? If true, everyone in Encinitas should be outraged, it looks a lot like a financial scam and the tax paying residents are certainly suffering damages.

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    1. Hahaha. Never forget, they promised us jetpacks, too.

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    2. Promised and delivered. Everything mentioned is already in use.

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  19. Can they go shopping, take naps, have barbecues, go for a jog, and have movie night?

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  20. Can they collect between $180,000 and $200,000 per year starting at age 50

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    1. and pay taxes on it that knock that down by 42%. B.F.D.

      you sound jealous.

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    2. Pissed is more like it.

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  21. Neutral comment - great timing by the union. The stock market was booming at the time of this decision. The same arguments were made in the 90s.
    Meanwhile, in the private sector, a 2-3% increase would be more normal. And few of these private sector folks have a defined benefits pension.
    That is the aspect to consider.
    There is absolutely no reason to give these increases to a defined benefit program. This is a giveaway. A greedy one at that.

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  22. 6:08 here.
    Wishing to clarify.
    If an employee has a defined benefits plan -that pays a monthly $ for his/her entire life after retirement, there is no friggin reason to be bumping up the annual contract as was done here. Those that voted yea on this are stupid or irresponsible
    Either way, they are not serving the taxpayers.

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    1. The defined benefit is exactly that - defined. It's not opened ended. So if the benefit as defined no longer provides the intended coverage it could be subject to modification.

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    2. 12:46 - Yes, a defined benefits plan is defined but it is also based on the average salary of the last several years of service. I am not sure how Encinitas defines the base but where I worked, it was the average of the last five years of work. That average was the basis for the defined benefit.
      When the city of Encinitas pumps up the annual salary for these employees, they are exponentially increasing the pension burden.
      A more reasonable annual increase would have been tied to inflation. Why the bonus above that rate?

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  23. I'm not sure that Encinitas staff or safety personnel needs a bigger pay check. If they leave they can be replaced by someone that wants to do the job.

    Vote them out!

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  24. Remember, NO ONE has more time to comment on the Internet than firefighters. They are present on this blog en masse.

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    1. Seems pretty obvious. They are doing a pretty piss poor job of defending their raise. Won’t even respond to the defrauding the city through collusion to rake up overtime.

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  25. so true. That and so much time for everything. They only "work" 2 - 24 hour shifts per week. Their "shifts" include BBQs, workout, sleeping, and don't forget movie time. Sweet Job. Tax payers get screwed.

    Not Police - That jobs sucks. no one like you until they need you. They actually deserve the pension.

    Increase the pension and pay for cops and dock it for princesses and life guards which are about as useful as border patrol.

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    1. Would much rather pay cops 200k/yr. they actually put their lives on the line. Nothing but praide for the local sheriffs. While they are working all day, the princess are getting paid to do what everyone does on their own time. Watching tv, exercising, shopping should all be done on ones own time. Don’t see cops do any of that on duty.

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