T.J. Zane, president of the Lincoln Club of San Diego County, a major backer of the Comprehensive Pension Reform Initiative, and Michael Zucchet, general manager of the city's largest organized labor group, the Municipal Employees Association talk with NBC 7's Gene Cubbison.
The controversial Comprehensive Pension Reform measure is going forward with over $1 million in campaign funds in the hopes of securing enough votes to pass.
Supporters will meet at Phil’s BBQ Monday evening to kick off another round of campaigning. They hope to raise another million dollars in the time between now and the June 5 election.
The first surge of the campaign – the “qualification campaign” was held up by a stream of lawsuits, said San Diego Lincoln Club President TJ Zane.
Now, they've entered the "passage campaign," in which they will focus on getting the votes needed to pass the measure in June.
“We’re looking forward to kicking off the second campaign by reaching out to voters,” Zane said.
The Comprehensive Pension Reform measure (CPR) was designed to tackle the city’s municipal pension fund shortfall. It would transition city employees from the current pension system to a 401(k) type of retirement contribution. It may also freeze pensionable pay for new city employees for 5 years.
The measure faces strong opposition from most Democrats and labor advocates.
In December 2011, mayoral candidate and attorney Hud Collins filed a lawsuit against the CPR, arguing the initiative isn’t an amendment to the city charter, but rather a charter revision.
Then, in February 13 of this year, local labor unions teamed up with the state’s Public Employee Relations Board (PERB) to file an official complaint against the initiative.
Both lawsuits were struck down.
Zane says with the $1.1 million already raised in support of the measure, they’ll be able to reach out to voters through many mediums.
He expects the campaign will be able to raise the first third of its $1 million goal by March 17.