Fire And Police Pension Officials Up In Arms Over Latest Berke Pension Task Force "Scenario"

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Officials of the Chattanooga Fire and Police Fund are up in arms over the latest "scenario" from the Berke administration on changes to cut the cost of the pension program.

Chris Willmore, president of the Pension Board, said, "If this goes in, fire and police from all ranks will up and quit, including those who are nowhere near their retirement age."

He said the board earlier submitted its own cost-cutting plan. He said it would bring savings of over $126 million.

Mr. Willmore said fire and police are willing to make some concessions, "but, my goodness, not this dramatic. Not something that is so out in leftfield. I shudder at this."

He said the proposal said the change would cripple fire and police hiring. "Nobody would want to come work for the city."

Mr. Willmore said the change would amount to a five percent pay cut for fire and police, plus provide reduced retirement benefits.

He added, "The benefits are not worth what you would have to pay. It's like paying for a Cadillac and getting a Nova."

Frank Hamilton, pension fund administrator, said the latest task force figures "are not comparable anywhere in the region."  

The proposal was shown during a morning pension board member by Fire Capt. David Brooks, who is on the task force.

A number of those at the meeting snapped shots of the sheet on their cell phones and posted it on Facebook.

Fire and Police have set up their own Facebook page on the issue, which has already brought 41 retirements this year.

The change would change the retirement age to 58 or after 32 years of service.

There would be no cost of living adjustment until age 62, then it would be limited to one percent.




Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: ALVAREZ, MARCELINO P  207 LAWS AVE #A CHATTANOOGA, 37411  Age at Arrest: 45 years old Arresting Agency: Tenn Highway Patrol DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE --- ARNOLD, DERRICK  5191 CENTRAL AVE CHATTANOOGA, 37401  Age at Arrest: 27 years old Arresting Agency: Chattanooga DRIVING ON ... (click for more)

Bradley County Authorities Hold Active Shooter Drill

The Bradley County Sheriff’s Office, Cleveland Fire Department, Bradley County Fire and Rescue, Bradley County 911 Communications Center, and Bradley County Emergency Management Agency took part in an active shooter exercise early this morning at Bradley Central High School to evaluate tactics and technologies for responding to and containing rapidly escalating shooting incidents. ... (click for more)

A Tribute For My Brother – Sgt. Jonathan Gardner, U.S. Army

Seven years ago today, my family and I found out that my brother, Sgt. Jonathan D. Gardner, was seriously injured by a roadside bomb, (explosively formed penetrator - EFP), while on a mission in Kuwait. The EFP went through the bottom of his seat and put a softball size hole in his upper thigh. The doctors said that if the bomb had entered the Humvee an inch to the right, he ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Saturday Funnies

All of us who marvel at the sound of bagpipes at a funeral realize the majesty that people like piper Scottie Maclellan can lend to any “homecoming” and for years there has been a wonderful tale out of Nova Scotia that leads this week’s parade of The  Saturday  Funnies. Mind you, I do not write these stories, as many who have followed man’s laughter down through the ... (click for more)

Orange Overwhelms White, 34-7, In Tennessee Spring Game

KNOXVILLE – After almost a month of spring camp and four quarters of ones versus twos, one glaring question remains: how much will the fall arrival of graduate transfer Keller Chryst change the dynamic of the battle for starting quarterback?   While new Tennessee head coach Jeremy Pruitt was calling for an electric atmosphere at Saturday’s Orange and White game, the ... (click for more)

Stoker, Tate Prevail In 50th Chickamauga Chase 15K

They couldn’t have asked for a more perfect day weather-wise for the oldest and longest running race on the Chattanooga Track Club’s schedule. Temperatures were cool, but not cold, and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky.   Add to that the fact there was very little wind and you have perfect conditions for the 50 th Annual Chickamauga Chase. A lot has changed with this ... (click for more)