Watsonville Pensions: What Retirees Are Receiving

CalPERS pension list shows what former city and school employees are collecting.

More than 836 retired school, city and other public employees in Watsonville are collecting pensions, a few of them receiving more than $100,000 a year.

The retirement compensation is part of a list posted by the San Jose Mercury News and other newspapers.

The CalPERS list was unveiled as the state Legislature last week approved a pension reform bill that is now on Gov. Jerry Brown's desk.

Among other reforms, the legislation raises the retirement age for most new employees from 55 to 67 to receive full benefits. It also eliminates so-called "double dipping" and caps the pensions of highly paid retired workers.

Some employees are collecting CalPERS pension from more than one agency. Howver, teachers don't receive Social Security benefits.

In the , there are 648 retirees listed who are receiving CalPERS pensions.

At the top is Cathy Iglesias, who was earning $13,811.70 a month when she retired after working more than 37 years in the district. Iglesias collects about $11,704.78 a month in pension, or more than $140,000 a year.

Next is Maryanne Mays, superintendent, who was earning $13,606.25 a month when she retired after working more than 30 years in the district. Pow collects about $9,712 a month in pension, or more than $116,500 a year.

There are five other retirees listed who collect more than $7,000 a month, or more than $84,000 a year.

At the bottom of the list, there is one retiree who receives $336.82 each month.

The City of Watsonville has 180 retirees on the list.

The retiree collecting the most is retired Police Chief Terry Medina. He was paid $19,726.75 a month when he retired at age 63 after working more than 42 years for the police department, the county and as a military police officer. He now collects—before taxes—about $16,620 a month in pension, or about $189,487.12 annually.

Retired Watsonville police officers and firefighters account for eight of the top 10 highest pension receivers in the city, all grossing $90,000 or more annually.

There are also 27 retirees listed who are collecting at least $10,000 a month, or $120,000 a year.

On the flip side, there are four retirees listed who received less than $2,000 in all of 2011.

Curtailing retirement costs has been a priority in Watsonville in recent years. City leaders have negotiated changes to pension programs with employee bargaining units, including

Also on the list are five retired Pajaro Valley Public Cemetery District employees and three retirees from the Pajaro Valley Water Management Agency. All receive a range of $5,000-$34,000 in pension funds annually.

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ChicaFresa September 13, 2012 at 03:36 PM
While i support pensions for those who have provided many years of public service i am more concerned about how their pensions affect current public budgets? That is the real issue. What does this mean to the current workforce and how does this impact public safety services. I understand that pensions represent about 50% of the City's budget? What about the school district's budget? If this is true, it is absolutely OUTRAGEOUS! I think a full article about this is worthwhile since our services continue to be slashed.
Kim September 13, 2012 at 07:46 PM
They receive over 80% of their monthly income after they retire plus full medical. They don't even have to pay in for any of this. I know someone currently getting ready to retire and went to his CalPERS mandatory retirement class. They teach them how to get the most out of it by working their #'s. I understand that maybe you have worked hard all your life but to get over 80% of your income with full medical is outrageous! With the baby boom generation retiring this will break us all for sure!!!
Steve Bankhead September 13, 2012 at 11:32 PM
The recent deal for pension reform worked out with the public employee unions brags it will save something like $50 billion over the next 30 years, but that's because most of the reforms only affect new hires. An of course that means any savings won't really be generated for another 20 or 30 years when they begin retiring. Here's hoping the state hasn't crashed and burned before that, because this deal kicks the can 30 years down the road.
Cathy P. September 14, 2012 at 02:34 PM
@Steve: actually the recent deal for pension reform does have some affect on current employees: they will no longer be able to purchase nonqualified service, or “airtime,” after January 1, 2013. Current (and future employees) would forfeit pension benefits if convicted of a felony in carrying out official duties. There will be new restrictions on post-retirement employment. AB 340 also prohibits retroactive pension benefit enhancements for current as well as future hires. All other issues will be back on the bargaining table when the various contracts expire. I expect that current employees will also be paying much more into their benefits/compensation packages & retirement -as it should be - in the future as well.
Steve Bankhead September 14, 2012 at 03:21 PM
Cathy: That's why I used the phrase "most of the reforms" in my comment. The reforms you cite are still nickel and dime window dressing for the governor's tax package compared to mainstream retirement costs for new employees which will definitely be kicked down the road far beyond any immediate cost savings benefit. And even that long-range $50 billion benefit is only a small dent on the total public pension shortfalls estimated at $250 billion and higher.
Cathy P. September 14, 2012 at 03:42 PM
"nickel and dime window dressing?" As I said, when many current contracts expire - some as soon as next year - current employees will be affected and it won't be about nickel and dimes.
David H. Perez September 14, 2012 at 04:27 PM
So what's the solution Steve? Despite the stream of generalizations and misinformation flying around out there, here are some FACTS about my personal status as a retired public employee. My retirement income is no where close to 6 figures (many uninformed people are saying all law enforcement people retire with a 6 figure income); I PERSONALLY paid a substantial amount of money into my retirement account over nearly 30 years; as a retiree, I currently PAY for my medical, dental and vision insurance. So where is all of this cushy stuff people are saying I am supposed to be receiving? Are there some abuses out there that need reform? Of course. But the abuses everybody is outraged about constitutes an extremely small percentage of public employees. As far as the governor only proposing "window dressing" as you said, what would be your plan if you were in his shoes? My wife will also soon be retiring from a job in the public sector and will not by any means have a lavish retirement income. Would you feel better if our retirement income were reduced to poverty status?
Eye B. Tender September 14, 2012 at 07:57 PM
"So what's the solution ..."? Well Dave, they could try to sell their FIFTY TWO MILLION DOLLAR local government "Sadam Palace" on the open market (pictured above). Of course, they wouldn't get anything close to what they've required the Taxpayers to BORROW for their cute and cuddly local white elephant..., but, they could certainly raise a few bucks - maybe even cover a minute or two more of writing those posh Government Workers' Party retirement checks. And who cares about the debt - we can always tax successful private enterprise to death, right?
aptospirate September 14, 2012 at 08:41 PM
This whole pension thing sucks. The worst part is the citizen is not even in the loop. You have govt workers unions dealing with govt worker managment. I say the "solution" is to privatize as much govt/ as possible. Like cal trans, We don't need them. We could hire out all that work, and the public works as well. Prisons should be privatley run as well. Get govtr workers off the welfare of the tax payer
Cathy P. September 14, 2012 at 09:58 PM
"I say the "solution" is to privatize as much govt/ as possible." -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The problem is corporations have never looked out for the public's interest and never will. They are only going to look out for their shareholder and their own personal interest. That’s what they do! That’s their purpose for existing! When one argues for less government and tells you the free market can do it better - that privatizing public facilities and social services is in the public’s best interest- what they’re really talking about is wealth redistribution. It is and has always been a scam, not a true free market solution. As for the argument that privatization saves the taxpayers money – think again! Privatizing always looks good at first, especially on paper, but the reality is that once a favored few are able to limit, control, and define what may be offered, selection shrinks, service is reduced, quality diminishes, and prices soar.
Cathy P. September 14, 2012 at 10:02 PM
Forgot one other thing: private entities can declare chapter 7 bankruptcy and disappear in a heartbeat. Now THAT would suck!
Cathy P. September 14, 2012 at 10:18 PM
@Kim: absolutely untrue for 98% of CalPERS retirees. I am getting ready to retire myself after almost 30 years of service and will receive slightly over 50% of my current salary and will not receive full medical (dental or vision) either. It's too bad that the few who do make out like bandits give a bad name to those of us who don't.
Watzon McWats September 15, 2012 at 12:45 AM
Plenty of people pay into it too (at least the smart ones who aren't getting %80 for free). I will say though, even %50 is HUGE compared to the private sector. A life time of 401K matches will yield you somewhere around %5 (I'm being generous here, this assumes you started working and contributing in your early 20's), and that requires the employee to put their own money into the pot just to get started. It's hard for me to hate though, I'd love %50+ and the ability to retire a decade before everyone else.
Watzon McWats September 15, 2012 at 12:47 AM
With the money I put into my private 401K (which is still below the recommended amount), I could buy a pretty nice second car, or move to La Selva Beach or Rio Del Mar.
David H. Perez September 15, 2012 at 01:37 AM
@Eye B. Tender (not sure how you conceived that fake name). First, my question as to what is the solution was directed to Steve Bankhead, not you. Secondly, you will see my name listed as DAVID, not Dave. Even my best friends know they risk their lives by calling me Dave. BTW, are your real initials E.M.?
Eye B. Tender September 15, 2012 at 03:36 AM
Wow Dave - I realize that big government and massive national debt is all about maintaining maximum comfort for you pampered government workers, but Free Speech too? You fat cat political insiders have just taken too much for yourselves. Since you obviously didn't care about the American Public, we can no longer afford to care about you. So, what's the solution ..."? Sell your cronies' FIFTY TWO MILLION DOLLAR local government "Sadam Palace"? That could certainly kick your favorite can down the road a minute or two longer. (It was supposed to stimulate the local economy. How'd that work out? Or is that just another pesky mention of the Taxpayers' unimportant bottom line?)
Eye B. Tender September 15, 2012 at 03:54 AM
That's the real issue. The deal with the Government Workers' Party is that they have all these issues that are never solved politically when they hold an airtight majority - instead. they're kept alive so they can be trotted out in election after election. It's clever politics to be sure - a thick smokescreen to hide their only real issue. The only thing they really care about is looting the Public Treasury. Trouble is, the money is all gone now because they already spent it. They clearly didn't about the Taxpayers' bottom line, but their lack of concern couldn't make reality go away forever.
Eye B. Tender September 15, 2012 at 04:09 AM
"The problem is corporations have never looked out for the public's interest and never will. ..(etc.)" It should be about the Public, not the government workers. The Government should contract with the entity that can deliver the best product at the most reasonable price. If the Government Workers' Party could somehow win such a competition, then they'd actually deserve the job. Otherwise, you Party of Government fascists are simply cheating the Public with your insider crony monopoly.
Watzon McWats September 15, 2012 at 04:54 AM
I'm not %100 all about privatizing, but one of the beauties of publicly traded organizations is that anyone can buy into them and reap the rewards. If one is upset that they're only looking out for their shareholders, they can simply buy some stocks and become one. As poorly as some of them are run, I'm not sure if I'd want things like parks or police departments to to become private though.


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