Brian Sandoval filed for his second term as governor on March 7, 2014. He said that if re-elected he would serve out his full second term. We shall see about that.
It IS guaranteed he will win re-election, unless of course he sets it up so he looses. This would let him challenge Reid in 2016, if Reid runs for re-election and let him keep his promise that he would serve a full second term if re-elected. Now THAT is crazy speculation!
He said Nevada is in recovery mode but there nothing that shows Sandoval deserves the credit. Our recovery would have happened even if the governor’s office was vacant. Economic recoveries have momentum and Nevada would be swept along toward recovery no matter what.
Finally, he said he still has a lot of work to do in education. This is certainly true… Nevada still ranks at the bottom regarding education. Unfortunately, whatever he has done the past four years hasn’t changed this. It is bothersome he brings it up as a “must do” item now. I wonder why education was not on the his “to do” list four years ago?
Sandoval proves a vacant governor’s office is a good idea and would save money too. He has has had little effect on Nevada other than reducing state employee benefits and laying off hundreds of them so he can brag about it to his conservative friends.
Let’s lay him off but let’s not brag. It would be unseemly to do so.
This week, the Las Vegas Review Journal (“newspaper”) recently published an article that discussed PERS retirement payments. In that fluff piece, they mentioned the Nevada Policy Research Institute’s (NPRI) “Transparent Nevada” website. That website now has a searchable database of retired Nevada public employees based on January 2014 PERS pay register data.
To calculate an annual retirement amount, the January monthly amount was multiplied by twelve. Though most of the annual amounts should be reasonably accurate, there will be some wildly inaccurate pay information. So, to write something credible about PERS is impossible at this time. Please read a very good an article by Anjeanette Damon called, “Publishing incomplete Nevada PERS data is irresponsible“, Reno Gazette Journal, February 13, 2014.
The new database is simply a voyeuristic act by NPRI with help from the “newspaper”. The new database serves no valid investigative journalistic purpose and unfortunately encourages public ridicule and disdain toward retirees.
The NPRI and the “newspaper” are irresponsible.
Their hatred of public employees is very clear and has been the cornerstone of their reporting about public employees for decades. This parochial mentality blinds them to the truth.
When they write about public employees, they lash out like children on a playground. It is too bad they can not be spanked for this reprehensible behavior.
FYI: The NPRI is a conservative political “think” tank with IRS charity status.
The Reno Gazette Journal’s Executive Editor, Kelly Scott published an interesting column today about why the paper requested information from PERS. It is an interesting read and worth a few minutes of your time. Here is the link: http://www.rgj.com/article/20140202/NEWS/302020029/Kelly-Scott-Why-we-ve-asked-PERS-data
This is part of what she wrote in that column:
“That data was requested as one part of our examination into the future of our state’s Public Employees’ Retirement System.
We are examining the system for signs of corruption, inefficiencies and unethical or illegal behavior. We hope to independently review the entire system to ensure that it is not being abused. We also want to examine the benefit packages of elected public officials.
We have no intention of printing the names of all 47,000 people in the system and their associated benefits unless that specific information is directly relevant to stories we pursue.”
Reno Gazette Journal, February 2, 2014, “Kelly Scott: Why we’ve asked for the PERS data“
I am confident that NV PERS complies with Nevada’s laws regarding public employee retirement. I believe state retirees, after decades of public service for low pay, deserve every penny they receive. I am looking forward to reading future RGJ studies regarding PERS.
P.S. Let’s hope the Las Vegas “newspaper” will stop its voyeurism of state retirees and public employees in general.
Kelly Scott’s contact information: (775) 327-6785, email@example.com
After a court order, the Nevada PERS released some information about retirement pay of its retirees. In response, the LV Review Journal, no friend of any public employee, published an article on January 30th describing how much some notable retired public employees make. The article was simple and simply written to titillate, misinform and engender bad feelings towards all public retirees. Calling out some individuals for possible public rebuke serves no public good.
The article is also an incredibly amateurish response.
Publishing lists and cherry picking data is a simple and easy way to attack public employees. It is not newsworthy. The new PERS list is no different from the many Nevada public employee pay lists found on various sites. Lists don’t mean anything and right now Nevadans are left with little other than that.
Newspapers claim they serve the public and it seems they think creating a list is all they need to do. It’s not.The question is, “What’s the purpose of the list or any public list?” Yes, it informs the public, but what can be gleaned from the data? This is what journalism is supposed to be. It’s about digging deep, looking for questions needing answers.
Nevada’s news agencies must stop with simplistic and sensational stories like the one published in the “newspaper” mentioned previously.That’s so junior high school.
Last week, PERS representatives told the Legislative Interim Retirement and Benefits Committee that their assets increased by over $3 billion dollars for this fiscal year. (which started July 1, 2013). They went on to say that PERS’ total assets were $31.8 billion and the rate of return for the last fiscal year which ended June 30, 2013 was 12.4 percent. The average rate of return over the past 29 years is 9.4 percent. Incredible!
These earnings are despite the Great Recession which decimated the financial viability of millions of Americans.
Also, their management costs are just one tenth of one percent of plan assets. This is an incredibly low figure. Management costs are so low, that this alone saves about $110 million a year when compared with an “average” pension fund.
Of course this is very bad news for Sandoval and his cronies. Your know them … the ones who continually spout the same time-worn narrative that PERS is doomed and Nevadans will have to pick up the pieces. I recently read an article about a right-wing “think” tank in Las Vegas. Their analyst stated that PERS was about to collapse and take Nevada with it. Expect more of the same as we get closer to the 2015 legislative session which starts early next year.
When will the bull stop? Never, unfortunately. But at least we have some great news and know that Sandoval won’t be pleased about it.
On November 21st, the NV PEBP Board voted to restore some benefits it took away several years ago within the self-funded PPO plan. The so-call Consumer Driven plan will now cover 80 percent of the medical bills from when the deductible is met and until the out-of-pocket maximum is reached. The individual deductible will go down by $400 for an individual and $800 for a family.
The healthy surplus is again the result of state employees being pressured by high deductibles and co-pays. For the past few years, the NV PEBP has announced unexpected high excess reserves and every year it gives back some of them. The people doing the figuring are incompetent. Seriously… they are incompetent. Something has to change. Let’s start with the resignation of the NV PEBP executive officer Wells. I have said this before and will say it again. He needs to resign. His salary could then be categorized as “salary savings” a common term for those knowledgable about state budget bullshit.
A couple of sessions ago the chicken-little executive officer announced there was a record-setting $100 million deficit, implying that state employees were medical insurance leeches and something had to be done and it had to be NOW! All lies and more bullshit. After he said that, the high deductible plan started and state employee bank accounts and salaries were pillaged. This was in addition to salary cuts, furloughs and increased pension payments.
Reality was different. State employees made up the deficit and paid millions extra into the reserve account. This shows state employees are not leeches and they more than pay their way. I wonder when people will get that? Certainly, the PEBP executive officer and his boss, Sandoval don’t.
Over these years, the PEBP Board returned millions of dollars to state employees over the objections of the executive director. I thought, “What a mindless minion.” Then I remembered… he is just one of many Sandoval minions with orders to make state employee lives harder. Why? Because Sandoval’s base likes to pick on state employees and too many think every employee gets an office, makes lots of money, usually over $100,000 a year and has a Cadillac health insurance plan. I have met many people who actually believe this. No, really! (Note: All were Republicans, wonder if there is a pattern here? Hmmm…) They are shocked when I tell them cube farms are standard and only one and a half percent of all state employees make over $100,000 a year with a fifth of all employees making $25,000 or less. I asked that they look at the cube farms in the Bryan Building to get a sense of some working conditions.
Just thinking … if you add a child or two to a household with an income less than $25,000, many state employees would qualify for welfare. Now that is a sorry state of affairs. It is immoral to balance the state’s budget on the backs of state employees as Sandoval and the Legislature have done the past six years or so. Shame on them!
The PEBP executive officer makes Sandoval look bad but then, the quitter, do nothing and know nothing governor is sunny about his future. He is probably right about that because voters don’t know what he is. He is counting on low information voters to keep him in office and he won’t truthfully say will quit his governorship a couple of years after his re-election.