Morality Rhode Island Style
In early June Gordon Fox former Speaker who's Statehouse Offices were raided in March voted to pay bankrupt curt Schillings 38 Studios Bonds even though they are insured because of a "moral "obligation.Taxpayers were hit with $12.5 million.The campaign to pay was orchestrated by Governor Chafee who lied about forming a "forensic investigation". When his director testified before the House Finance Committee he was asked what happen to the "forensic investigation" into 38 studios promised in 2012. He simply said "it just didnt happen". That director, Richard Licht , was made a supreme court Justice days later. Gordon Fox resigned as speaker in March yet voted last week and is under investigation by multiple authorities but strangely not yet charged. Just weeks after that on June 20 ,2014 Representatives from Central Falls introduced and passed the following bill that obligates State taxpayers to bail out Central Falls public workers and guarantee no less than 75% of what they think they are due.
Here is the bill
(4) It is fair and just that the state appropriate sufficient funds to
the city to supplement the city's funding of the pension benefits to
the Central Falls retirees to ensure that the Central Falls retirees
continue to receive seventy-five percent (75%) of the base pension
benefit, after taking into account all applicable cost-of-living
adjustments, for their lifetime and to the extent applicable, for the
life of their beneficiaries,
This is what just passed in Rhode Island late session last day June 20 2014. Bill # H 7776a . Sponsored by well known labor leaders. Here is the plain language explanation:
EXPLANATION BY THE LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL OF
A N A C T
RELATING TO TOWNS AND CITIES - RETIREMENT OF MUNICIPAL EMPLOYEES IN CENTRAL FALLS
This act would provide for the state to appropriate sufficient funds to the city of Central Falls for payment to Central Falls' city retirees so that those retirees would continue to receive seventy-five percent (75%) of their base pension benefit, after taking into account all applicable cost-of-living adjustments, as of July 31, 2011, for their lifetime, and to the extent applicable, for the lives of their beneficiaries.
This act would take effect upon passage.
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This act sets a precedent and a line in the sand as to what is "appropriate and just" to be taken from Rhode Island State Taxpayers and then redistributed to public employees. Thus, it has now been declared and passed that in Rhode Island 75% of liabilities owed to public employees in municipal pension and OPEB . , shall be guaranteed & if necessary paid by State Taxpayers. Meanwhile GASB 68 goes into effect next week. Under GASB 68 neighboring Providence Rhode Island has a pension liability exceeding $2.1 billion with just $300 million in assets. This " insane " act orchestrated by Mattiello ,says that the public employees are entitled to a minimum of 75% of pension liability as fair and just and the State will by law appropriate the amount to keep it at 75%. This 75% threshold means that state taxpayers are guaranteeing or will be taxed $1.3 to $1.5 billion and that will go to Providence public employees. The resulting chaos is that People in Tiverton and Burrillville will be paying for Providence firemen retirements. Johnston RI is also a basket case and the town of 29,000 owes an additional $250 million.Its fireman make over $100,000 a year in retirement. The total for all the cities is between $3 to $4 billion. There are 410 thousand households in Rhode Island . This will cost every household more than $7500 dollars.
This insanity occured just days after our Governor Chafee and Speaker Mattiello convinced us to pay bankrupt 38 studios bonds that are fully insured and RI doesn't legally owe.This will eliminate any insurance company investigation into corruption. Rhode Islanders were told that all that Chafee and Mattiello and Fox were trying to do is avoid a ratings downgrade and theoretically save taxpayers $100 million over 20 years. They said it was a question of "morality".
Michael G Riley