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Atlanta_City_Council.jpgSpecial to the Daily World

The Atlanta City Council laid out the remaining schedule for pension deliberations with members saying they will take the necessary time to fully vet all reform proposals and options.

In a meeting called by Council President Ceasar Mitchell, the City Council on Wednesday, May 25, discussed the administration’s proposed reform options as well as the process for moving forward in its deliberation of proposed reforms to the city’s police, fire and general employees’ pension plans.

Until recently  the administration had proposed two reform options including: (1) shifting all employees in the Defined Benefit plans to the City’s current 6 % Defined Contribution plan provided to those above Grade 18; and (2) shifting all employees in the Defined Benefit plans to a new 8% Defined Contribution plan with Social Security.

In Spring of 2010, the administration formed a Pension Reform Taskforce to devise pension reform options. It was announced then that the Taskforce work would take 45 to 60 days to complete its work.  In April, 2011, nearly a year later, the administration presented pension reform legislation for the council’s consideration.  On May 25  the administration provided to the media a slide presentation of a new pension proposal and requested a City Council vote on their proposal by June 30. “We now have a new proposal option on the table that was presented to the media,” said Mitchell.

“Obviously we can’t vote on slide show presentations. We look forward to receiving and reviewing the new proposal.”

“Passing reform by June 30 presumes an acceptance by council that this new proposal is perfect and above review,” Mitchell said.

Mitchell said that demanding that the council pass this new proposal by such date is tantamount to asking the council to abdicate its deliberative function and obligation to citizens under the city charter.

“This ‘my proposal or the highway’ stance is not only somewhat disrespectful, but also shows little regard for the role of council as the governing body of the city in our bicameral form of government,” he said.  “The council will move diligently and act in

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