AMENDS CHARTER; CHANGES POLICE FIRE DISABILITY AND RETIREMENT BOARD COMPOSITION.
QUESTION: Shall the composition of disability and Retirement Board be changed to add three citizen positions and delete three beneficiary positions?
SUMMARY: Section 5-201(a) of the City Charter defines the composition of the Board of Trustees for the Fire and Police Disability and Retirement Fund. The Board is composed of eleven members: the Mayor, the City Auditor, the City Treasurer, the Police Chief, the Fire Chief, three active members from the Fire Bureau and three active members from the Police Bureau.
This measure would change the composition of the FPD&R Board while maintaining the current size of the Board. Three citizen members would be added. The two positions held by the Police Chief and Fire Chief would be combined into one position they would share on a rotating basis. The active members elected from the Police Bureau would be reduced from three to two and the active members elected from the Fire Bureau would be reduced from three to two. The citizen members would be appointed thus: the Mayor to appoint one member; the elected members from the Police and Fire Bureaus to appoint on member; and the members of the FPD&R Board to appoint one member.
This measure amends the Portland City Charter to include private citizens on the Board of Trustees of the Fire and Police Disability and Retirement Fund. The Board would retain the current size of eleven members.
This measure would provide for three Board positions for citizens residing in Portland. The citizen members may not be active or past members of the Fire and Police Disability and Retirement Fund and have not been employed as a City of Portland firefighter or police officer. One citizen, who shall not be a member of any public pension fund, shall be nominated by the Mayor and appointed by the Council. One citizen shall be appointed by the elected Board members of the Bureau of Police and the Bureau of Fire, and one citizen shall be appointed by a majority of the members of the Board of Trustees.
Citizen members shall serve three-year terms, appointed on a staggered basis so that there is one vacant position each year.
The measure would consolidate the two positions held by the Chief of Police and Chief of the Bureau of Fire into one position that will be shared on a rotating basis. This will maintain the link between management and the members that are receiving disability payments.
The measure would reduce the number of positions held by active members of the Fire Bureau from 3 to 2 and positions held by active members of the Police Bureau from 3 to 2.
All members must be given orientation training and no member can receive any compensation.
The measure would have no cost.
Chief Administrative Officer
Office of Management and Finance
No arguments AGAINST this measure were filed.
ARGUMENT IN FAVOR
YES on 26-8
I urge you to vote YES on 26-8, which will add three citizen trustees to the board of the Fire and Police Disability and Retirement Fund.
The current Portland charter requires an 11-member board comprised of the mayor, auditor, treasurer, three police officers, three firefighters, the police chief, and the fire chief. That means eight of the eleven board trustees are police or fire personnel. The proposed change will replace some of them with citizens so only five of the eleven trustees will be from the police or fire bureaus.
YES on Measure 26-8 adds citizen oversight
It is important to provide a disability and pension system for police officers and firefighters. The charter spells out pension benefits, and most medical disability cases are straightforward. Some disability cases, such as stress claims, are more complicated. Trustees review the facts and expert opinions, but there is still a lot of personal judgment involved. The final decision is made by a vote of the trustees.
We need citizen board members to establish confidence in the decisions of the board. Without citizens on the board I think the public will always have concerns about police officers and firefighters having a majority on the board, and approving payments to their co-workers. Adding more citizens will remove those concerns.
And Vote YES on 26-9 to stop disability payments to jailed criminals
You should also vote YES on 26-9 to discontinue disability payments to police officers or firefighters who are in jail or prison, convicted of a crime. The current charter does not allow us to stop these payments.
Paid for by Gary Blackmer, Portland City Auditor
(This information furnished by Gary Blackmer, Portland City Auditor)
The printing of this argument does not constitute an endorsement by Multnomah County, nor does the county warrant the accuracy or truth of any statements made in the argument.