The Blog

Police Officer Seeks Truth: False Claims Tinge Reed Pension Lawsuit

Leave it to a trained investigator to run down the truth behind false claims.   

In an incisive op-ed,  Jim Unland, the president of the San Jose Police Officers’ Association, takes on claims by San Jose Mayor Charles Reed that the public retirement “reform” initiative the mayor’s been pushing won’t “eliminate” the public pensions of law enforcement and public safety personnel, including firefighters. 

Mayor Reed, in fact, has sued Attorney General Kamala Harris on the basis that her office’s title and summary description of the Reed initiative spotlights the reality that the measure would eliminate pension protections for public employees. 

“Why is Reed’s initiative unlikely to make the ballot?” asks Unland. “Because the smart money in California knows it is destined to fail. Voters may support ending pension system abuses, but they don’t back, as Reed would say, ‘eliminating’ the retirement security of those who keep our streets safe, teach our kids, and protect our property over the title and summary for his proposed measure to enable elected officials to reduce the retirement benefits of teachers, firefighters, police officers, school bus drivers and other public employees.” 

Unland’s statements are echoed in a Sacramento Bee article on Reed's efforts to set aside the title and summary, which reports that Harris’s summary of the “Public Employees Pension and Retire Healthcare Benefits Initiative – Constitutional Amendment” – notes that it “eliminates constitutional protections for vested pension and retiree healthcare benefits for current public employees, including teachers, nurses, and peace officers, for future work performed.”

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