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 A Word From Burky Worel


8/14/08

The following thoughts are from Burky Worel, retired Vallejo Police Officer and former head of VPOA.  The article he is referring to is Public Safety Salaries—Why are they so high? written by Paul Norberg and Katy Miessner on VIB February 20, 2008. (ed.).  

Just read this article that was posted back in February. I found it very good. If I could just point out a couple of things. The contract that was ratified by the council back in 2000 would not have gone to arbitration because it was proposed by the city manager when they were in the first year of an existing three year contract. As I said in a letter to the Times Herald it was approved by everyone on the council including Ms. Schivley. When Martinez left everyone on the city council praised him, as did many community members, as being a great city manager following behind him blindly as some now say we all should mister Tanner. No I'm not saying anything bad about Tanner I'm just saying there is nothing wrong with questioning anyone, including me. In my 30 years as  police officer salary increases were based in many different ways. It was based on the bay area CPI, straight percentage and salary surveys which included different cities than what are now in the survey.

As to the retirement changing in 2000 that was done by the state legislator not the VPOA. The old rate was done away and the two choices were 3%@50 or 3%@55. When it was agreed upon for the 3@50 the cities' contribution went down but then went way up after the stock market tanked. In the 90's the city was only paying somewhere around 5% into PERS because PERS had so much money. Unfortunately the city didn't set the money they were saving aside to use when the rates went back up.

Burky H Worel