Over $100 Million Dollars in Memphis Line of Duty Disability Abuse

Wednesday, Channel 3, reported on the situation of the City of Memphis line of duty abuse to the cost of almost $12 million dollars per year. This situation has been going on for over 30 years at the City of Memphis and I estimate that the total payout is well over $100 million dollars out of the underfunded pension fund. When I alerted Channel 3 about this abuse, they did some great research on the annual cost and some of the people involved including Tennessee Republican Representative Curry Todd and others.

Comparing the 429 listed on the Channel 3 report, the number of line of duty disability retirements at Shelby County government and the MLGW are insignificant. Obviously there is a problem. The immediate problem is that approval or disapproval is given by the City of Memphis pension board made up mostly of the applicants’ co-workers whereas Shelby County turns approval over to an insurance company.

The bigger problem is the line of duty pension ordinance words. There is no provision for finding other work for the line of duty disability applicant, annual reviews or any other provisions that could prove that the applicant can or could do useful work for the city. This must be changed.

Just yesterday, Channel 3, Lucian Pera, an open records attorney hired by channel 3 to challenge any attempt by the board to close the meeting to the public, and I attended a pension board meeting where there was an applicant for line of duty disability. He got unanimous approval of the board (click here to see the composition of a 2009 board made up mostly of co-workers) to become the 430th line of duty recipient of your tax dollars for life, tax free.

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