CalPERS Audit Exposes Pension Spiking by Former CEO of Risk Management Authority
November 16, 2016
The California Public Employees' Retirement System (CalPERS) Board of Administration (Board) voted to adopt an administrative law judge's (ALJ's) decision today that prevents James Towns, the former CEO of the Special District Risk Management Authority (SDRMA), from spiking his pension with an improper 67 percent salary increase.
CalPERS' audit of SDRMA uncovered email communications in which Towns requested the SDRMA Board to convert his merit bonuses to base salary in an effort to boost his pension. The audit also found that there was no publicly available salary schedule for Towns' CEO position, which is required under the retirement law so that taxpayers can know how much public employees are being paid.
"This case exemplifies CalPERS' expanded efforts to identify and root out pension spiking," said Matthew Jacobs, CalPERS General Counsel. "We will not tolerate any form of pension abuse, and invite the public and our public employer partners to assist us in this effort."