To the editor of the Culver City Observer
February 22, 2018
Yesterday I was quite shocked to see my name and the amount of pension that I receive from the State Teacher’s Retirement System published in your paper.
Neil Rubenstein has written an article that lists the Culver City Board of Education Pensioners’ amounts. He goes on to add an article about Long Beach that could cause the city finances to go in the red next year due to all the pensions they give out.
I would like to explain to him and to your readers the difference between city pensions and educator pensions. All public educators in California are in the State Teacher’s Retirement System(STRS). Each year every teacher contributes a percentage of their salary to STRS. The district contributes a percentage as well. The State government also contributed to the fund, but had to discontinue doing so for several years, before resuming their contributions.
Teachers receive their pensions from this fund. There is a formula based on the highest salary, years of service and age, that determines the pension amount. All of the pension funds come from STRS. I am not a Culver City Pensioner, as Neil stated, but a pensioner of STRS. I worked equally in two districts in California both of whom contributed to my retirement. The City of Culver City and the Culver City District do not pay my retirement.
I am not sure what Neil Rubenstein is implying in his article or why he felt the need to publish our pension amounts. But he is wrong if he says retirees are contributing to the debt of the city and/or school district.
Marvin Brown, EdD
Editors note: Mr. Brown is a former Principal at Culver City High School