Viewer Response to Consider This on City retirement plan - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Viewer Response to Consider This on City retirement plan unrealistic

Viewer 1

You are right on with what you have said.  LP&L should be giving back surplus to the ones paying them.

And, whoever heard of giving 2 dollars for every 1 dollar!  That is unsustainable.

Viewer 2

Shame on you!!!!!!!!!!!!! I have always listen to your broadcast, and I was not impress with your coverage along with several others. However, this is one time you should have done a little more research before popping off. Tell the citizens what the blue collars make digging ditches, maintaining streets, etc in rain sleet or snow.  I like to see you explain to the spouses of fallen city employee doing their job at their pay scale and tell  them that they don't deserve the retirement  match from the city.  You state that the two for one is not worth it, is it worth a man/woman making $22,000.00 after 29 years of service to the citizens that should be able to retire and can't. I know now none of this matters to you and you only wanted to throw rocks at the city one more time, well this time you threw rocks at city employees, hope you sleep good and I hope every City employee got to see your broadcast. I personally won't every set eyes on your station again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Not that you would care.

Viewer 3

I have to strongly disagree with you on your stance regarding the 2 for 1 match..
 
I was a police officer with the city for about 13 yrs..before leaving and going into the medical field..
 
I can tell you that one of the reasons this type of retirement is offered is to recruit and retain qualified people for the city.
 
Generally most jobs in city government pay a whole lot less than what the private sector does.  The reason that people come to work for the city is for the better retirement and to serve their fellow citizens.
 
If you were to get your wish..I wonder how many qualified people that run all types of city services would leave for private sector jobs that pay more?
 
Whatever money you would save with reducing the 2-1 match..would be lost in the increased salaries that you would have to offer to compete with the private sector salaries and other city governments that offer the 2-1 match.
 
I can tell you that you would have about 200 people resign/quit from the police department and about that same number from the fire department..to go elsewhere..and you would not be able to replace them..ever!!  Given the critical and chronic shortage of police officers that we  have now have,  that would be distrastous!!  People in this town would be at the mercy of the criminal element..I know that you are probably thinking I am exaggerating..but I don't think we want.  

Viewer 4

Thanks for you comments last night about the city budget. I wonder why the city staff and the City Council members cannot think of things like this.
 
FYI, Mayor Martin told a person attending this mornings meeting that the report from the Charter Review Committee is, "going no where." I think the reason is that
the Council wants to raid LP&L for funds right now for next years budget. The LP&L board and to some extent, the Charter Review Committee wanted to try to limit
the City in the amount of money the City could get from LP&L. If the Council let the report from Charter Review Committee move forward right now, there probably be a really big fight over what amounts of money the city could get from LP&L. The City's request to have LP&P pay for the street lighting would become involved in the controversy, and kill any chance of that happening this year which would in turn affect next years budget. It is no secret that city employee raises are contingent on the City getting the street light money from LP&L.
 
While the City and City Council will argue that technically the street light money only frees up other monies that could then be spent for employee raises. In a sense they are right. But it reality, they will taking money that could be returned to the taxpayers for one purpose and indirectly diverting it to another purpose which has not been approved by the taxpayer. I think when you take money away from the taxpayers/rate payers, it is a tax. LP&L has announced that if they have to pay for City lighting, they may have to end user rebates or refunds.

Viewer 5

I sure didn't know this. Do they have any openings for old farts?

Viewer 6

First of all you should get your facts correct before you start pontificating on you soap box... The City of Lubbock employees do not have a 401k, they have a pension through TMRS. I was a City of Lubbock employee for 15 yrs and had to leave because I was unable to earn a living with them. The only thing that the city has to keep any hope of continutity with employees is that they pay 2/1.

Viewer 7

ADDRESS TO CITY COUNCIL ON 7-22-10
Because of the time limitation on speaking to the City Council, I was not able to say everything I wanted to say. So this note covers more information than I could cover this morning. 
 
Those of you who have been on the Council a while know that I have been a long time observer and participant in our city government for some time now. I am not a Johnny come lately. For this reason, I hope that you will take my comments seriously.
 
Because of the lack of information and behind the scenes dealings regarding LP&L buying Excel, there is a skepticism and concern by the citizens Lubbock about this transaction. The questions arising about how the funds from LP&L will be used has only increased the anxiety about what is going on with these two issues.
 
I understand the Council will be meeting with LP&L in a closed executive session this morning at 9 o'clock. I urge you to conduct your business or discussion with LP&L with transparency and in full public view. I cannot think of any reason why you should be having closed door meetings with LP&L unless it involves personnel matters.
 
I and other people that I have talked to are against the City taking funds from LP&L to pay for city employee wages. While there may be a need to raise city employee wages, it should not be linked to the City's ability to get funds from LP&L and then indirectly use it for employee pay for raises.
 
If you take money from LP&L to pay for employee wages, you will be setting a precedent of bleeding LP&L for funds like previous councils did that caused the recent financial problems for both the City and LP& in the first place.
 
I believe some of the media recently incorrectly reported that taking money from LP&L to pay for street lighting was alright in that it had been done up until two or three years ago. Money from LP&L to help to pay for the street lighting has not been done since the 2001-2002 financial year.
 
If we are going to try to keep LP&P as a separate entity, why should we keep diverting money from them every time a need arises, such as paying for city street lighting or some other reason, then INDIRECTLY diverting those funds for another purposes such as employee raises?
 
We do not ask South Plains Electrical Cooperative to pay a part of their profits back to the city to pay for the street lighting in the part of the city that they serve. Shouldn't we be fair and treat LP&P in the same manner as we treat South Plains Electric?
 
I URGE THE COUNCIL NOT TO TAKE ANY ACTION ON THIS STREET LIGHTING ISSUE OR ANY ISSUE REGARDING TAKING FUNDS FROM LP&L BEYOND WHAT MIGHT BE CONSIDERED FRANCHISE FEES UNTIL THE RULES OR REGULATIONS HAVE BEEN LAID DOWN BY A REVISED CITY CHARTER. IF IT TAKES ANOTHER YEAR, SO BE IT. JUST PROCEED WITH THE BUDGET PROCESS AS YOU NORMALY WOULD.

AN ADDITION:
 
I learned this morning that apparently there will be no action taken right away on the recommendations presented to the Council by the Charter Review Committee. It is my opinion that this is being done so that you can raid the funds of LP&L right away so that it will impact next years budget without being embroiled in controversy over how the new rules and regulations might or might not restrict the transfer of fund. This is wrong.
 
While you do have some argument that technically the street light money only frees up other monies that could be spent for employee raises. In reality, you will be taking money that could be returned to the taxpayers/ratepayers for one purpose and deliberately and indirectly diverting it to another purpose which has not been approved by the taxpayer. When you take money away from taxpayers/rate payers, that is a tax.

7/21/10
Consider This... City retirement plan unrealistic NewsChannel 11 General Manager Dan Jackson's thoughts on the city potentially forcing LP&L to pay for the operation of city street lights.
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