Congressional candidate Carl DeMaio. Photo courtesy DeMaio Congressional campaign

California’s independent Legislative Analyst’s Office has concluded that Carl DeMaio’s pension reform initiative could produce significant savings if approved by voters next year.

The ballot initiative, filed in June, would require voter approval for any new pensions or increases to existing pensions for government employees.

“Under this measure, defined benefit pension plans would not be available to new employees unless specifically authorized by voters. As such, it is likely that such benefits would be reduced or eliminated in many jurisdictions,” the legislative analyst’s office wrote in an official report released Monday. “These changes would reduce governmental employer costs significantly in the future.”

However, the analyst said those savings could be offset if government employees seek higher wages and other types of compensation.

DeMaio’s Reform California organization issued a statement saying, “Government union bosses are desperate to protect their gravy train at taxpayers’ expense. That’s why they are spinning a web of lies about the measure.”

The State of California and more than 3,000 local government entities employ more than 1.7 million full-time equivalent employees.

DeMaio, a former Congressional candidate and San Diego City Councilman, introduced numerous pension reforms in the wake of the city’s financial crisis.

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Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.