SAN DIEGO (AP) – Voters in two major California cities overwhelmingly approved measures to cut retirement benefits for city workers Tuesday in contests being closely watched as states and local governments throughout the country struggle with mounting pension obligations.
In San Diego, 67 percent voted in favor of Proposition B while 33 percent were opposed. More than 65 percent of precincts reported.
The margin in San Jose was even wider, with 71 percent in favor of Measure B and 29 percent opposed. Nearly half of precincts reported.
San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed called the vote a victory for fiscal reform.
"The voters get it, they understand what needs to be done," he said in an interview.
Supporters had a straightforward pitch: Pensions for city workers are unaffordable and more generous than many private companies offer, forcing libraries to slash hours and potholes to go unfilled.
"We believe people are tired of having services cut back because of big pensions," San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders, a Republican who is being forced from office by term limits, said recently.
Thursday, June 7, 2012
2 major California cities approve pension cuts for city workers