The current pension/spiking system is broken. You are seeing less services, and higher fee and tax increases because of the broken pension system. Less police officers on our streets, less services for our seniors, fewer library hours, and cuts to after school programs — and it will be getting worse. Phoenix recently instituted a new water tax in order to cover the pension costs. Last year, pension spiking was over $19 million of our budget. An additional increase of $18 million just to cover pension costs was in the budget. City staff has already forecast an additional $18 million to cover pension costs for next year.
After conducting interviews with eight candidates on Feb. 10, the Phoenix mayor and City Council announced the following individuals as finalists for city manager: Milton Dohoney, Jr. from Cincinnati; Rick Naimark from Phoenix; Deanna Santana from Oakland, Calif.; Ed Zuercher from Phoenix.
David Cavazos ‘ pension was $146,000 but it gets a healthy increase of 60-plus percent, or $90,000 more annually when you add in the various “spiking” components like cell phone, car allowance, sick leave, vacation cash-out, etc.
It will be of interest to see if Mayor Stanton and the Phoenix City Council “Walk the Talk” on their pension reform statements when they hire the new city manager to replace David Cavazos — as they are in total control on this hiring decision with a new contract and no union involvement. I trust they have learned their lessons from the past two city managers who have retired with inflated pensions due in large measure to “spiking” — not to have a “three-peat” situation happen on their watch.
Shame on the mayor and all of the City Council for allowing David Cavazos to “spike” his city pension. This is equivalent to allowing the fox to guard the chicken house — the process needs a total top to bottom review. I would prescribe a full bottle of laxatives to flush the system. Let’s get real and fix this issue now — no more kicking the issue down the road by giving it to “staff” to report back in the future. No wonder we have budget problems as we have a core breakdown in accountability, ethics and leadership.
The Phoenix City Council will vote on the final draft of the city’s 2013-14 budget, which includes new efficiencies in the city’s public information office, parks and public transit, on May 21 but Councilman Sal DiCiccio says the city could have increased even more services if staff didn’t get any raises or bonuses.
The city of Phoenix is celebrating Valley Bike Month throughout April with a variety of activities intended to get residents out on their bikes to share in the experience of cycling throughout the city. In partnership with Valley Metro, the city is encouraging seasoned cyclists and those new to biking to give it a try at one of these events:
Last week, Mayor Greg Stanton backed away from his campaign promise to the repeal of the food tax. Although I and many other Phoenicians are disappointed in his decision, I have appealed to the city manager and the other city councilmembers to help provide a plan that allows us to wean ourselves off the food tax revenue.
Mayor Greg Stanton and City Manager David Cavazos announced that Phoenix has been selected as a finalist for the Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Mayors Challenge, a competition created to inspire American cities to generate innovative ideas that solve major challenges and improve city life — and that ultimately can be shared with other cities across the nation.
The Phoenix mayor and City Council, private sector members of the Innovation and Efficiency Task Force (I&E), city management and employees celebrated the task force’s accomplishments recently at the City Council meeting.
The sexual harassment allegations against the Phoenix Fire Department are appalling. No woman should have to go through the harassment inflicted on this Phoenix Fire Department employee, who recently sued the city over years of such treatment.
Phoenix city management has released an action plan to deal with a sexual harassment claim coming from the Phoenix Fire Department and to provide supervisors with training to address similar claims in the future.
Attorney General candidates Republican Mark Brnovich and Democrat Felecia Rotellini debate at the East Valley Tribune office in Tempe on Thursday, Sept. 26, 2014.Question 2: What are your thoughts on the restriction on RU486 and should the state continue to pursue the case to the Supreme Court?