Just last week, Public Defender Jeff Adachi told reporters there wasn't a chance he'd back down from his competing pension reform measure. And he meant it. Today, he turned in more than 72,600 signatures needed to put it on the November ballot -- far more than the 46,177 he needs.
Now he's got to wait for the San Francisco Elections Department to qualify the measure. In the meanwhile, he continues to sell his argument that pension reform is long overdue.
"We realized very early we needed to take action, and so we spent the last three months collecting signatures," Adachi told SF Weekly. "It's a challenge in San Francisco to even stop someone on the the street, let alone engage them and convince them to support a ballot initiative like pension reform."
Adachi's latest pension proposal has riled politicians over at City Hall
, who are backing Mayor Ed Lee's more modest reform measure. At issue is the 4 percent raise awarded to police
officers "in exchange for their agreement to contribute 3 percent more
into their pensions," which will cost the city millions in the
long run, Adachi told SF Weekly
Adachi says the pension problem will cost the city $829 million within the next four years, up from $357 million. He sees his proposal as a fair and balanced
way of dealing with this drain on the city. It will save taxpayers $500 million in the next four years and protect jobs and services.
"It exempts lower-paid employees so that if you earn more you pay more, and if you earn less you pay less," Adachi says.
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