Broke City Uncovers Pols’ Secret $4.5M Pension Fund
Calif. city manager stashed $4.5 million to dodge pension limits
By Rob Quinn, Newser Staff
Posted Apr 26, 2011 3:18 AM CDT
Former Bell City Manager Robert Rizzo leaves a court arraignment in Los Angeles last month.   (AP Photo/Nick Ut)

(Newser) – A Los Angeles suburb with a big hole in its finances has found $4.5 million in secret pension funds a disgraced city manager set up for himself and his cronies. Robert Rizzo and his former assistant, Angela Spaccia, created the funds to allow public employees in Bell—especially themselves—get around government limits on public employee pensions, reports the Los Angeles Times.

One account covered some 40 workers; another was reserved for Rizzo and Spaccia. Rizzo is on trial for more than 50 charges of corruption relating to a scam in which he conspired with other city administrators to pay themselves huge salaries. His own salary before he was ousted was more than $800,000. Officials in Bell, which has a total operating budget of some $13 million and where one in six people live below the poverty line, say they're going to try to get their hands on the $4.5 million to pay off the city's debts.

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Apr 26, 2011 8:40 PM CDT
blow this picture up to nation size ,... its a perfect microcosm of what is happening to the whole country right now , this is US getting taken to the Cleaners by the Crooks and Liars , the Bankers and their Shills in Congress ,.... we gots to Flush The Terlit
Apr 26, 2011 7:06 AM CDT
Wow..... what a huge surprise !!!!!! NOT !!!!! Someone please show me the first Italian who ISN'T a thieving, conniving weasel and I'll show you someone who just hasn't figured out how to steal yet. Looks like that greaser at Countrywide Financial took the whole country to the cleaners. "If it quacks like a duck"..... The voting public in Bell must be brain dead or drunk. I can just see all the slippery WOPS reading this and squirming in their chairs thinking.....I'ma gonna finda that-a Cement-a-head-a guy and a smasha his-a face.
Apr 26, 2011 5:57 AM CDT
What do the top ten cities (over 250,000) with the highest poverty rate all have in common? Detroit, MI (1st on the list) hasn't elected a Republican mayor since 1961. Buffalo, NY (2nd) hasn't elected a Republican mayor since 1954. Cincinnati, OH (3rd) hasn't elected a Republican mayor since 1984. Cleveland, OH (4th) hasn't elected a Republican mayor since 1989. Miami, FL (5th) has never had a Republican mayor. St. Louis, MO (6th) hasn't elected a Republican mayor since 1949. El Paso, TX (7th) has never had a Republican mayor. Milwaukee, WI (8th) hasn't elected a Republican mayor since 1908. Philadelphia, PA (9th) hasn't elected a Republican mayor since 1952. Newark, NJ (10th) hasn't elected a Republican mayor since 1907. Einstein once said, 'The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.'