Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Joe Saino is a Taxpayer's Saint

Memphis' Joe Saino is the very definition of a watchdog and he is doing it thru hard work, open records requests and an absolute unwillingness to be intimidated or thrown off the trail of corruption.

Much of the wrong doing in government is never prosecuted as "corruption." It simply involves changing the rules that would have made it corruption.

Joe broke the pension corruption story in Memphis several years ago and continues to follow up.


I have been investigating for some time the whole question of City of Memphis appointed positions. This has been a huge issue since the January 2001 pension resolution that allowed elected and appointed people to retire after 12 years regardless of age. This has cost millions of dollars to date and will go on costing taxpayers well into the future.

In September of this year I asked, through an open records request, for information about the number of appointed positions over and above those allowed in the Memphis City Charter and other information about the cost to date of the January 2001 pension resolution and what will happen after the end of this year. To date, after three months, I have only gotten one piece of information and that is the copies of the two 2004 resolution addressing this issue. While I wait for the other information that I have been promised, I want the public to look at these two resolutions which I find interesting. These confirm and approve the situation that has been going on for 20 years and confirms that the council has been doing nothing until Carol Chumney and John Lunt brought this forward in 2004 and tried to change the situation. The City Council did do away with the January 2001 pension resolution, BUT ONLY FOR FUTURE PEOPLE, NOT FOR THEMSELVES, and apparently they are adding the positions shown below and making the rest of them into civil service positions.