Costa Mesa Mayor Pro Tem Righeimer Lies on Fox News about Pensions

Councilman Jim Righeimer - Costa Mesa, Photo: Chris Prevatt

Costa Mesa, CA — Mayor Pro Tem Jim Righeimer lied on national television Monday about the so called “need” to layoff 213 Costa Mesa city workers. Righeimer was interviewed on Fox News and was asked whether the decision to layoff employees was forced or a choice. He answered by claiming that the layoffs were necessary because the city pension liabilities awarded by previous contract agreements were unsustainable.

He said that “ten years ago the city’s pension liability was $5 million a year and that this year it will be $15 million.” He went on to quote the false claim he made at the council meeting three weeks ago, where he helped ram through the rushed decision regarding layoffs, “that CalPERS projected those liabilities to reach $25 million in five years.” Apparently Righeimer cannot remember the fact that when asked whether the statistics prepared for his presentation were from CalPERS staff had to admit that it was an internal forcast and not from CalPERS.

Fox also interviewed one of the city workers, Steve Bradford, who is scheduled for layoff on September 17th. Braford told Fox that he does not know what he will do. Prompted by the interviewer he indicated he might have to consider moving out of state and renting out his home just to cover the mortgage.

It should be noted that Righeimer and his council colleagues have not even researched whether outsourcing the jobs of city workers will even address the city’s liability for pensions. They do not even know if they will save any money at all, or if many of the jobs they have slated for layoff could be performed more cost effectively contracted out. But with a projected current year shortfall of $1.4 million, these guys have no problem handing out no-bid contracts to consultants to implement their plan. They even have hired a new PR guy (Bill Lobdell under a 90 day contract) to make them appear more transparent.

News Flash!

The only thing transparent is their Bull about the need to layoff these workers. Contracting out the jobs of Costa Mesa City workers is a just another political stunt that they are making up as they go along.

Here is the Fox interview for your amusement.

  5 comments for “Costa Mesa Mayor Pro Tem Righeimer Lies on Fox News about Pensions

  1. sb
    March 22, 2011 at 9:13 pm

    I agree with everything said and saw the city council meeting that voted for the lay-off’s. They had all their information wrong about the “projected numbers in the future”, They need to be taken out of office NOW and let the employees stay and do their jobs.

    • Matthew Cunningham
      March 24, 2011 at 10:12 am

      “They need to be taken out of office NOW and let the employees stay and do their jobs.”

      Yes, because the reason city governments exist is to provide city employees with jobs.

      I don’t think I ever got six-months notice that I would be laid-off, providing me with six months in which to find a new job. Two-three weeks severance and I was on my own.

  2. Jim Fraser
    March 22, 2011 at 11:54 pm


  3. L.M. Jenkins
    March 23, 2011 at 11:29 am

    Everything Righeimer said on Fox was a complete fabrication as anyone who has ever worked for any public agency knows. He is receiving way more pay than he said, plus over $1,000 a month for medical benefits alone. Additionally, he and every council member are members of PERS with lifetime benefits – just like the employees they are trying to eliminate. And since Costa Mesa doesn’t have a finance director, and hasn’t for almost two years, where are the “budget figures” coming from? Seriously, someone needs to go in there with a magnifying glass and the deceptions would be easily found.

  4. Whoa!
    March 23, 2011 at 1:12 pm

    Lobdell is contracted for $75 an hour not to exceed 40 hours a week! quoted from the Daily Pilot newspaper. Research that!!

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