Jeff Adachi's pension plan comes under fire

July 22, 2010 7:41:33 PM PDT
Pension reform is considered by many to be the third rail in city politics. Just about everyone agrees it needs to be done, but in San Francisco there is a huge battle over the latest effort.

For the second time this week rallies have been held by city workers to condemn a proposed charter amendment to overhaul the city's pension system.

"It's wrong, it's not San Francisco, it's horrendous," Police Officers Association spokesperson Gary Delagnes said.

The officers are protesting a reform measure by the city's public defender Jeff Adachi that calls for city employees to pay more into the retirement system and contribute more to the health care costs for their families.

A recent civil grand jury report warned of a pension tsunami that could cripple the city's economy unless something is done.

That report came under fire Thursday because it turns out the chair of the grand jury committee is also the treasurer for Adachi's ballot campaign.

"We believe he has used his position on the civil grand jury to manipulate the civil grand jury report and to provide information and backing to Mr. Adachi's campaign organization," union attorney Peter Saltzman said.

Their target is Craig Weber. He says his legal counsel advised him there was no conflict.

"I was very careful to keep my work as a member of the grand jury separate from my activities as treasurer of the campaign," Weber said.

But City Attorney Dennis Herrera was concerned enough to fire off a letter to the judge in charge of the grand jury to make sure the integrity of the system was intact.

"If you're using that to further a political cause then it could be legally problematic; the city didn't reach any conclusions, we didn't make any specific allegations," Herrera's spokesperson Matt Dorsey said.

Still, these critics are asking the city attorney, district attorney and the ethics commission to investigate the matter and that the reform proposal be taken off the November ballot, insisting that its full of misinformation.

Right now the measure has not even qualified for the ballot. Election workers are still verifying signatures.

There was no comment from Adachi Thursday.

Load Comments