By: Diane Benjamin
Obviously the LAWYER on the Bloomington City Council believes David Hales instead of looking at the facts. Amelia stated this during the last Council meeting, I had hopes you would figure out the truth by now. No such luck. She sent the following email to a Bloomington resident this morning: (mis-spelled words were left intentionally)
Subject: Re: I DO NOT
Date: September 9, 2015 10:21:26 AM PDT
Thank you for your email. The City of Bloomington will be discussing a potential sales tax increase on Sept. 14, but likely will not take any action until Sept. 21. I think it is clear that Bloomington’s priorities differ from that of Normal and I would expect our conversation to focus on the potential impact a sales tax increase would have on our infrastructure needs.
With regard to the city pensions, this is a complicated issue that has not always been accurately reported. It relates back to a sick leave buy back policy implemented by the former city manager in 1995. It has now been revised for all new hires with the city so that the pension spikes will not happen in the future. However, our ability to change the policy retroactively is severly limited as the Illinois Constitution explicitly prohibits the state from diminishing benefits once they are earned. We do not believe that Mr. Hales could have prevented the larger IMRF payments that have been made recently even if he was fully aware of the policy when he was hired in 2009. (There was an opportunity to structure our payments differently in 2012, but I am not sure we would have chosen that option as it would have required relatively high interest payments.) It is a shame that this policy appears to have been implemented without a full analysis of its implications on our future pension obligations. For more information, I recommend you refer to this recent Pantagraph article: http://www.pantagraph.com/news/local/city-s-sick-leave-buyback-policy-in-place-years/article_416264fc-b531-57ab-837f-1e5ed3dea0fb.html
Thank you for taking the time to reach out to me on these very important issues. Please let me know if you have any additional thoughts or questions.
The items in red are flat out lies by a council person who doesn’t research the facts herself.
The items in bold are bull and immaterial to the argument!
It’s not complicated Amelia.
No where in the Illinois Constitution does it say that employees are allowed to accumulate sick days and get paid for them more than 3 months before retirement so their pensions are spiked. The 2012 law was passed to prevent pension spiking! David Hales choose to ignore that law and ALLOW employees to spike their pensions anyway!
Why are these employees getting sick pay MORE than 3 months before they leave the City? Who gets paid benefits BEFORE they leave?
All David Hales had to do is say “You get a check on the day you leave”. It’s not complicated. It doesn’t violate the Illinois Constitution. It’s what IMRF themselves suggested.
David Hales cost the City more than $1.2 MILLION!
Get a clue Alderman! Quit listening to the Hales CYA and start representing your Ward!