|For video click here.|
You can watch last night's City Council meeting by clicking on the above. The city has yet to get the video for the December 13, 2016 City Council meeting posted on their site yet, so you can see that we're quite ahead of the curve here. Last night's affair was fairly short, so you won't have to spend too much of your time witnessing all of the excitement.
As irrelevant to understanding what is actually going on here as most of it might be.
Sierra Madre's Pension Debt Crisis
I personally doubt it. The actual reason why the city needs more revenue on a consistent basis is its $40 million dollars in overall debt to CalPERS. According to information that has been put together by CALIFORNIA PENSION TRACKER, which is run by Dr. Joe Nation, Project Director for the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research (link), Sierra Madre is now carrying over $40 million dollars in pension debt. Here is the chart:
This never comes up at City Council meetings. It won't come up in two weeks when the City Council begins to plan for yet another water rate increase, nor will it be discussed in the run up to 2018's tax increases. Which are sure to happen. Get ready for a postcard deluge.
Sierra Madre's pension debt is the driving force behind the city's constant need for more cash. Trust me, it wasn't all of that deceptive nonsense you were fed by those Yes On UUT people.
If you disagree with me about this, then please let me know what you think the actual reason for the endless City Hall money grab might be. While you're at it perhaps you can also tell folks what last year's utility tax increase is being spent on.
I am all ears. Here is a little bonus reading for you.
Stanford Study Reveals California Pensions Underfunded By $1 Trillion - Or $93k Per Household (Zero Hedge link): Earlier today the Kersten Institute for Governance and Public Policy highlighted an updated pension study, released by the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research, which revealed some fairly startling realities about California's public pension underfunding levels.
After averaging $77,700 per household in 2014, the amount of public pension underfunding for the state of California jumped to a staggering $92,748 per household in 2015. But don't worry, we're sure pension managers can grow their way out of the problem...hedge fund returns have been stellar recently, right?
Stanford University’s pension tracker database pegs the market value of California’s total pension debt at $1 trillion or $93,000 per California household in 2015.
In 2014, California’s total pension debt was calculated at $77,700 per household, but has increased dramatically in response to abysmal investment returns at California’s public pension funds that hover at or below zero percent annual returns.
The Pension Tracker database (www.pensiontracker.org) is maintained by the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research (SIEPR) and is intended to help localize pension data by providing the ability to look up the market value of pension debt in any locality in California.