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Posted: 9/11/2010 11:54:42 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/11/2010 11:57:37 AM EDT by ar-jedi]
discuss...

http://www.app.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2010100908071


In 1997, Tom Foley was trying to carry a man from a burning building when he fell down the stairs.

The Atlantic City fire battalion chief broke two vertebrae and ruptured three discs in his back. Those injuries ended a firefighting career that spanned more than a quarter century and entitled him to a state disability pension.

Foley, 60, still collects that pension: $59,736 a year. He also is paid $60,600 a year as Atlantic City's director of emergency management and he is building up a second pension through a separate state retirement system.

"I deal mostly in management,'' Foley said. "I don't do physical things at all.''

That arrangement … drawing a disability pension while working another job … could come under a microscope this fall when Gov. Chris Christie and the Legislature take up pension reform.

Christie's office is expected to announce pension reform recommendations in the coming weeks, and the former head of the state's Division of Pension and Benefits has said disability pension rules should be reviewed.

Pension reform has come to a head because the state pension system had $45.8 billion in unfunded liabilities as of June 2009. By some estimates, the system will run out of money within the next 10 years, and some state officials have said even current retirees may receive lower benefits and be forced to pay higher health care costs.

The Asbury Park Press analyzed public pension and payroll records and found 66 public employees who draw disability pensions totaling $2.1 million per year while earning $3.8 million in salaries. The vast majority of those are former police officers and firefighters.

There could be more. Incomplete state data made it impossible to link many disability pension records with public payroll records.

If those 66 employees continue to collect disability pensions through age 75, those pension payments will total more than $51 million, not including cost-of-living increases. Additionally, about half of those employees are accumulating a second retirement pension.

Among them is Viola Richardson, 65, a Jersey City councilwoman who draws a $41,000 disability pension from when she worked for the city as a police officer. She also earns a $39,000 salary for her seat on the council, as well as $91,000 a year for a second job with the Hudson County Department of Corrections.

Domenick Brando, 42, injured his spine about four years ago, when he was a South Hackensack police officer. He draws a $70,000 disability pension and now works a desk job as a health and safety coordinator for the Brick Township Municipal Utilities Authority.

Brando was only 38 years old when he started collecting his disability pension and said he didn't want to sit around the house when he could be working a desk job. Without the pension, Brando would be making only half the salary he earned as a police officer … not including overtime.

"I have a family. I have a mortgage.'' Brando said. "I have bills to pay.''

State Senator Jennifer Beck, R-Monmouth, said she is not sure whether someone on a disability pension should be prohibited from working another public job, noting that the goal of worker's compensation is to return that person to the work force. But she said that given the financial straits of the pension system, nothing is off the table.

"It's a question maybe the Legislature should ponder as we look at pension issues in the fall,'' Beck said.


One pension reform issue is this: Five years after an employee is awarded a disability pension, the state cannot require medical examinations or otherwise investigate whether the employee remains disabled.

Additionally, there are no income limits for police and firefighters earning a disability pension. Teachers and other public employees do face income limits, and the Department of the Treasury can collect excess pension payments from those members.

<...continued at link above, 4 pages...>


ETA:
ooops, can't edit the poll question, but it should read "disability" not "pension".
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 11:55:54 AM EDT


<COC>
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 11:57:15 AM EDT
Hell no.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:04:30 PM EDT
And these leeches probably think nothing of it.

Good thing we don't have any financial troubles..........
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:05:03 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/11/2010 12:06:16 PM EDT by Tekka]
If they aren't getting paid for the new job, I have no problem with it.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:20:42 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Tekka:
If they aren't getting paid for the new job, I have no problem with it.



Um,did you read the article?

They are collecting disability,but still working a gov job,and adding more in pension costs.Double (sometimes triple) dipping.

But hey,the money is from the state,so who cares?

Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:23:21 PM EDT
Fucking thieves
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:23:49 PM EDT
It's a scam. Either you can work or you can't; and if you can then you shouldn't be collecting disability. Public service workers have learned to game the system.

If something isn't done to reform the system we will certainly face more financial catastrophe in the years to come.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:23:50 PM EDT

Originally Posted By carguym14:
Originally Posted By Tekka:
If they aren't getting paid for the new job, I have no problem with it.



Um,did you read the article?

They are collecting disability,but still working a gov job,and adding more in pension costs.Double (sometimes triple) dipping.

But hey,the money is from the state,so who cares?


Yes, I read the article. I was saying that I'd have no problem if people were paid pensions and allowed to work a new job without pay. As it is now, I consider these double and triple dippers to be low life scum. They shouldn't be allowed to do that at all.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:27:38 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Tekka:

Originally Posted By carguym14:
Originally Posted By Tekka:
If they aren't getting paid for the new job, I have no problem with it.



Um,did you read the article?

They are collecting disability,but still working a gov job,and adding more in pension costs.Double (sometimes triple) dipping.

But hey,the money is from the state,so who cares?


Yes, I read the article. I was saying that I'd have no problem if people were paid pensions and allowed to work a new job without pay. As it is now, I consider these double and triple dippers to be low life scum. They shouldn't be allowed to do that at all.




OK,sorry.I misread what you were saying.
I wouldn't have a problem with them drawing disability and continuing to work at a job they could do at no cost either.As has been stated,they are gaming the system................at our expense.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:29:03 PM EDT
So who are the 3 (so far) gov employees that voted "yes"?

And what is your reasoning??
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:29:21 PM EDT
The firefighter was injured during the line of duty, after working 25 years. He has a disability pension, he is not on temporary disability. He retired as a firefighter. There is reason he had to retire. The municipality he works for have standards for firefighters. Do you seriously want someone with back problems engaged in firefighting. He got another job after he was retired that didn't involve physical stress.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:30:28 PM EDT
How so?


Originally Posted By mean_sartin:
Fucking thieves


Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:31:12 PM EDT

Originally Posted By shooter69:
It's a scam. Either you can work or you can't; and if you can then you shouldn't be collecting disability. Public service workers have learned to game the system.

If something isn't done to reform the system we will certainly face more financial catastrophe in the years to come.

It's not a scam, he can't work as a firefighter, but he can work another job.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:32:47 PM EDT

Originally Posted By 1387Delta:
The firefighter was injured during the line of duty, after working 25 years. He has a disability pension, he is not on temporary disability. He retired as a firefighter. There is reason he had to retire. The municipality he works for have standards for firefighters. Do you seriously want someone with back problems engaged in firefighting. He got another job after he was retired that didn't involve physical stress.

lots of people work for the fire department that don't jump into burning buildings every day.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:33:57 PM EDT
Originally Posted By 1387Delta:
The firefighter was injured during the line of duty, after working 25 years. He has a disability pension, he is not on temporary disability. He retired as a firefighter. There is reason he had to retire. The municipality he works for have standards for firefighters. Do you seriously want someone with back problems engaged in firefighting. He got another job after he was retired that didn't involve physical stress.




And the other job is paid with tax dollars,as well as any benefits and the pension.

Money taken from those of us that produce.

Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:35:25 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/11/2010 12:36:55 PM EDT by carguym14]
Originally Posted By 1387Delta:

Originally Posted By shooter69:
It's a scam. Either you can work or you can't; and if you can then you shouldn't be collecting disability. Public service workers have learned to game the system.

If something isn't done to reform the system we will certainly face more financial catastrophe in the years to come.

It's not a scam, he can't work as a firefighter, but he can work another job.



Scam might be harsh.Sure he can work another job,but he shouldn't be allowed to double dip-get another job in gov-nothing added to your retirement and no additional benefits.


ETA-I'm guessing the poll differences will be between those of us that have to fill the trough,and those bellied up to it.

Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:39:15 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Tekka:

Originally Posted By carguym14:
Originally Posted By Tekka:
If they aren't getting paid for the new job, I have no problem with it.



Um,did you read the article?

They are collecting disability,but still working a gov job,and adding more in pension costs.Double (sometimes triple) dipping.

But hey,the money is from the state,so who cares?


Yes, I read the article. I was saying that I'd have no problem if people were paid pensions and allowed to work a new job without pay. As it is now, I consider these double and triple dippers to be low life scum. They shouldn't be allowed to do that at all.

I am conflicted about this. Someone who retires from a public sector job and immediately goes back to work for the agency I think the agency has to disclose how this is going to save money. Sometimes it does, especially in the case of temporary workers. There are a lot of other instances where fiscally it would be in the public's interest to do this. In jobs that require training, the agency would save those costs. A lot of the time (in my area) the retirees are hired back, temporarily at a lower pay rate without benefits and they can be fired without cause. I don't agree with a "13th" paycheck, DROP programs, except in limited circumstances, or agency heads hiring back their cronies as "consultants". If someone works for a pension, no matter how many jobs they have, they should be allowed to collect them. This happens all the time with the military. Military retirement and a private/public sector retirement.

Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:40:35 PM EDT
In private business, if someone is disabled on the job and can no longer do that job BUT another job is available that he can do at no loss of pay, he does not get disability pay as long as he is employed. I do not see where a govt entity should be any different.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:41:29 PM EDT

Originally Posted By carguym14:
Originally Posted By 1387Delta:

Originally Posted By shooter69:
It's a scam. Either you can work or you can't; and if you can then you shouldn't be collecting disability. Public service workers have learned to game the system.

If something isn't done to reform the system we will certainly face more financial catastrophe in the years to come.

It's not a scam, he can't work as a firefighter, but he can work another job.



Scam might be harsh.Sure he can work another job,but he shouldn't be allowed to double dip-get another job in gov-nothing added to your retirement and no additional benefits.


ETA-I'm guessing the poll differences will be between those of us that have to fill the trough,and those bellied up to it.


Those "troughs" are filled by public employees too. You don't think they pay taxes?

Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:43:05 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/11/2010 12:44:56 PM EDT by MTUSA]
Theft.
The guy obviously has restored earning capacity therefore the disability payments should stop...
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:44:59 PM EDT

Originally Posted By fxntime:
In private business, if someone is disabled on the job and can no longer do that job BUT another job is available that he can do at no loss of pay, he does not get disability pay as long as he is employed. I do not see where a govt entity should be any different.

Most of the time it works that way. In the case of firefighters and police, they just put them out to pasture.

I can speak from experience. I was injured on duty and forced to retire. I got a letter in the mail, not even a phone call explaining what I had to do. I had 25 years in and I could retire (and did). If I had 5 years in, I'd be screwed. I haven't worked since, but I am not prohibited from working in the private sector or public sector as long as I can physically do the job.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:46:38 PM EDT
"State disability pension" misleading. He was a firefighter injured on duty. No longer capable of working as a firefighter so he was medically retired. his pension (not "disability") should not prevent him from working in another less physical industry.

Unless you also believe that veterens who collect VA benifits should not be allowed to work.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:47:48 PM EDT
Originally Posted By 1387Delta:
The firefighter was injured during the line of duty, after working 25 years. He has a disability pension, he is not on temporary disability. He retired as a firefighter. There is reason he had to retire. The municipality he works for have standards for firefighters. Do you seriously want someone with back problems engaged in firefighting. He got another job after he was retired that didn't involve physical stress.


No different than a Marine drawing a VA disability check and starting a new career.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:48:44 PM EDT

Originally Posted By MTUSA:
Theft.
The guy obviously has restored earning capacity therefore the disability payments should stop...

How is it theft? He worked 25 years for his firefighter retirement and was entitled to it. Now he is working at another job. Now, there night be an argument for reviewing his case if there is some sort of disability benefit tied to his retirement now that he is working, but I would suspect that the disability benefit is because he can't do the job as a fireman.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:48:55 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/11/2010 12:51:49 PM EDT by AR15fan]
Originally Posted By MTUSA:
Theft.
The guy obviously has restored earning capacity therefore the disability payments should stop...


Its not a disability check like SSI. Its a pension. He paid into it for years and was forced into rearly retirement due to the injury.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:50:51 PM EDT
Great thread bashing an injured firefighter. What's next?
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:51:58 PM EDT
Originally Posted By AR15fan:
"State disability pension" misleading. He was a firefighter injured on duty. No longer capable of working as a firefighter so he was medically retired. his pension (not "disability") should not prevent him from working in another less physical industry.

Unless you also believe that veterens who collect VA benifits should not be allowed to work.


And that's fine. But the way it's worded is where I have a problem
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:52:54 PM EDT
Originally Posted By 1387Delta:
Great thread bashing an injured firefighter. What's next?


Actaully its a great thread about shitty word use in an article that means a completely different and fucked up payment system.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:54:53 PM EDT

Originally Posted By mean_sartin:
Originally Posted By 1387Delta:
Great thread bashing an injured firefighter. What's next?


Actaully its a great thread about shitty word use in an article that means a completely different and fucked up payment system.

Someone gets it...
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:57:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Rumrunner358:

Originally Posted By 1387Delta:
The firefighter was injured during the line of duty, after working 25 years. He has a disability pension, he is not on temporary disability. He retired as a firefighter. There is reason he had to retire. The municipality he works for have standards for firefighters. Do you seriously want someone with back problems engaged in firefighting. He got another job after he was retired that didn't involve physical stress.

lots of people work for the fire department that don't jump into burning buildings every day.

Did you even read the first line of the article?

"In 1997, Tom Foley was trying to carry a man from a burning building when he fell down the stairs. "


A BURNING building..... Guy risks his life saving someone and you think it's OK to shit on him? That is all kinds of fucked up.

Link Posted: 9/11/2010 12:57:59 PM EDT
I do but get it, but this was reported as though he retired and then went right back to work for the state and double dippng which I view as thievery.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 1:00:00 PM EDT
This is why pensions should not be tied to jobs.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 1:01:06 PM EDT
In the case of the 25 year fireman he worked for a city dept and now works for a state agency - two different systems, two different jobs. If the city FD had a non-physical position he could do/fill he might have taken it.

There are abuses/fraud in disability systems but a one size fits all/zero tolerance policy is generally not a good solution to any problem.

Brian
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 1:01:25 PM EDT

Originally Posted By mean_sartin:
I do but get it, but this was reported as though he retired and then went right back to work for the state and double dippng which I view as thievery.

After 25 years he retired, which is perfectly OK. The fact that it was a disability retirement makes it sound like sucking off the system. It's not, he paid into his retirement, had the time in, and retired. He couldn't work as a firefighter any longer so he had to retire. There is no choice, you are forced out with a medical retirement. Nothing says he can't work again, just not as a firefighter.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 1:01:56 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Combat_Jack:
This is why pensions should not be tied to jobs.


Explain please.

Brian
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 1:04:09 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Combat_Jack:
This is why pensions should not be tied to jobs.

If only it were that easy. This discussion would make beans vs no beans / Glock vs 1911 look tame.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 1:05:16 PM EDT

Originally Posted By 1387Delta:
How so?


Originally Posted By mean_sartin:
Fucking thieves



It does not work that way in the private sector, If I go on disability and then
work, the amount I make on the new job is deducted from the disability payment.
This is a scam and things like this entitlement mentality is killing our country.


Link Posted: 9/11/2010 1:07:29 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Banditman:

Originally Posted By 1387Delta:
How so?


Originally Posted By mean_sartin:
Fucking thieves



It does not work that way in the private sector, If I go on disability and then
work, the amount I make on the new job is deducted from the disability payment.
This is a scam and things like this entitlement mentality is killing our country.




But if you retire and then go to work for a different company you still collect your pension, like this firefighter.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 1:09:55 PM EDT
Originally Posted By brian4wd:
Originally Posted By Combat_Jack:
This is why pensions should not be tied to jobs.


Explain please.

Brian


Defined benefit plans are unsustainable, at least as they have been managed, and require that someone do their full service in one job or field. When people burn out they either lose their pension or they go to shit in their current job. Administrators, even in the military, keep people around to make their retirement who are worthless and ought to go. Further it prevents people from taking other career paths and returning, etc.

Which is why I like the idea of DC pensions. Remove limits on employers contributions and allow them to vary their contribution rates as an incentive. A shit job with a poor pension might do 1%, but a very good job could do 5 or 10% if thats what it takes to attract candidates. The money comes out of that years budget, not 60 years down the road, so elected officials and public administrators are held accountable.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 1:10:02 PM EDT

Originally Posted By AR15fan:
Originally Posted By Banditman:

Originally Posted By 1387Delta:
How so?


Originally Posted By mean_sartin:
Fucking thieves



It does not work that way in the private sector, If I go on disability and then
work, the amount I make on the new job is deducted from the disability payment.
This is a scam and things like this entitlement mentality is killing our country.




But if you retire and then go to work for a different company you still collect your pension, like this firefighter.

Most of us in the private sector do not get pensions any more and those
that do don't get anywhere near that kind of money.
Like I said, killing our country.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 1:11:23 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/11/2010 1:15:02 PM EDT by justsayin]
If their new job entails a cut in pay or benefits, or hampers their earning potential, offer them the difference in pay.
Full salary when they are still able to earn a full salary, or more, doing another task?
I'm not a fan of that.

ETA: If you can take early retirement on the first job (without calling in favors or bending the rules,) I see no issue.
How is him working a different job in THAT case any different than a different employee starting fresh?

He won't be able to work the job as long, so his pension and benefits in most cases won't be what Joe Blow's would have been when he leaves the job again.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 1:13:25 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Banditman:

Originally Posted By 1387Delta:
How so?


Originally Posted By mean_sartin:
Fucking thieves



It does not work that way in the private sector, If I go on disability and then
work, the amount I make on the new job is deducted from the disability payment.
This is a scam and things like this entitlement mentality is killing our country.



He's not on DISABILITY. He retired. It works that way in the public sector too. If you are on disability and go to work, they take you off of disability. What almost all of the people posting here are not comprehending is that the firefighter RETIRED and is not on disability.

Link Posted: 9/11/2010 1:16:35 PM EDT
If you can't work then you can't work.

The husband of my wife's co-worker is on 100% disabilty from the VA. He claims he can't work because of injuries sustained from being in Vietnam. Yet the dude owns two apartment buildings and does all the maintenance himself.

Fucking leach.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 1:23:01 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Combat_Jack:
Originally Posted By brian4wd:
Originally Posted By Combat_Jack:
This is why pensions should not be tied to jobs.


Explain please.

Brian


Defined benefit plans are unsustainable, at least as they have been managed, and require that someone do their full service in one job or field. When people burn out they either lose their pension or they go to shit in their current job. Administrators, even in the military, keep people around to make their retirement who are worthless and ought to go. Further it prevents people from taking other career paths and returning, etc.

Which is why I like the idea of DC pensions. Remove limits on employers contributions and allow them to vary their contribution rates as an incentive. A shit job with a poor pension might do 1%, but a very good job could do 5 or 10% if thats what it takes to attract candidates. The money comes out of that years budget, not 60 years down the road, so elected officials and public administrators are held accountable.
Government pension plans are not all the same. The retirement association I belong to has almost 7 billion in reserves, and is very well funded for 13,000 retirees. We pay into our retirement system for the entire time we are working (12.15% each payday) and you are not vested until you have worked for 5 years.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 1:24:19 PM EDT

Originally Posted By VACaver:
If you can't work then you can't work.

The husband of my wife's co-worker is on 100% disabilty from the VA. He claims he can't work because of injuries sustained from being in Vietnam. Yet the dude owns two apartment buildings and does all the maintenance himself.

Fucking leach.


Different than the firefighter's case.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 1:26:43 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/11/2010 1:27:57 PM EDT by brian4wd]
Originally Posted By 1387Delta:
Government pension plans are not all the same. The retirement association I belong to has almost 7 billion in reserves, and is very well funded for 13,000 retirees. We pay into our retirement system for the entire time we are working (12.15% each payday) and you are not vested until you have worked for 5 years.



I thought CalPERS had some serious projected shortfall.

Brian


ETA - Based on 13K retirees I'll guess you're not CalPERS but county 1937 - it helps to read/comprehend the all the info

Brian
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 1:27:04 PM EDT
Originally Posted By 1387Delta:

Originally Posted By Combat_Jack:
Originally Posted By brian4wd:
Originally Posted By Combat_Jack:
This is why pensions should not be tied to jobs.


Explain please.

Brian


Defined benefit plans are unsustainable, at least as they have been managed, and require that someone do their full service in one job or field. When people burn out they either lose their pension or they go to shit in their current job. Administrators, even in the military, keep people around to make their retirement who are worthless and ought to go. Further it prevents people from taking other career paths and returning, etc.

Which is why I like the idea of DC pensions. Remove limits on employers contributions and allow them to vary their contribution rates as an incentive. A shit job with a poor pension might do 1%, but a very good job could do 5 or 10% if thats what it takes to attract candidates. The money comes out of that years budget, not 60 years down the road, so elected officials and public administrators are held accountable.
Government pension plans are not all the same. The retirement association I belong to has almost 7 billion in reserves, and is very well funded for 13,000 retirees. We pay into our retirement system for the entire time we are working (12.15% each payday) and you are not vested until you have worked for 5 years.


I'm glad yours is well funded. We're going to have to bail the rest out.
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 1:29:03 PM EDT
Link Posted: 9/11/2010 1:29:29 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Combat_Jack:

I'm glad yours is well funded. We're going to have to bail the rest out.


Like United Air Lines? Didn't another airline declare bankruptcy and foist the pensions on PBGC - ie taxpayers?

Brian

Link Posted: 9/11/2010 1:31:24 PM EDT

Originally Posted By brian4wd:
Originally Posted By 1387Delta:
Government pension plans are not all the same. The retirement association I belong to has almost 7 billion in reserves, and is very well funded for 13,000 retirees. We pay into our retirement system for the entire time we are working (12.15% each payday) and you are not vested until you have worked for 5 years.



I thought CalPERS had some serious projected shortfall.

Brian


ETA - Based on 13K retirees I'll guess you're not CalPERS but county 1937 - it helps to read/comprehend the all the info

Brian

Yep Act '37 County...
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