A court has dismissed a lawsuit by police against San Diego City Attorney Mike Aguirre. Aguirre has been trying to reduce pension benefits given away in 2002 by Mayor Dick Murphy, with support from Ann Smith of the MEA. The purpose of the giveaway was to keep unions quiet about a billion-dollar underfunding of the city pension system.Voice of San Diego
by WILL CARLESS
September 4, 2008
Court Loss for City Cops
In another legal loss for city cops, a federal court judge has dismissed a lawsuit brought by more than 1,500 city police officers against City Attorney Mike Aguirre and the city's retirement system.
The police officers had argued that their federal constitutional rights were violated when, in 2005, the city reduced or eliminated their employment benefits by mandating that police officers pay higher payments into their retirement plans, thus reducing the take-home pay of many officers.
In her decision yesterday, Judge Marilyn Huff dismissed the case, referring in her decision to an earlier decision she made in a related case brought by the Police Officers Association, the union that represents city police officers.
Huff ruled in that case that there was insufficient proof that the employment benefits that were reduced in 2005 were vested constitutional rights, and that the under-funding of the pension system doesn't implicate federal constitutional rights.
This was the second court loss for city police officers in two weeks. On Aug. 21, another federal court judge dismissed a lawsuit brought against the city by more than 700 officers for breach of contract and unpaid overtime.
"So much for Aguirre never winning a lawsuit," said Executive Assistant City Attorney Don McGrath, who represented Aguirre in the lawsuit. McGrath said that, by his count, the POA has lost six of the seven lawsuits it brought against the city and Aguirre.