City of San Diego Retired Employees Association
August 13, 2019
General Meeting Minutes
Jim Baross called the meeting to order. The July 2019 Treasurer’s Reports and General Meeting minutes were approved. Nominating Committee was confirmed. The members are John Tsiknas, Ty Rogers and Clay Bingham.
Next member tour will be Marston House on October 4. Details provided in the REA newsletter.
Mike Bresnahan reported on meeting with 8 of the 9 City Councilmembers to raise the visibility of REA. Meetings have been successful. Councilmember Kersey will be the last Councilmember he’ll meet with. Mike then plans to meet with the mayor.
Next Advocacy meeting will be at 9:30 a.m. on August 29 at the Mission Valley Library.
Jim Baross announced REA now has 1613 members, thank you to John Tsiknas for keeping track of this all-time highest member count.
Charles Hogquist, SDCERS Retired Trustee, announced that Carol Broad was elected SDCER’s President.
Cynthia Queen, SDCERS Member Services Director, announced three new appointments to SDCER’s Board: Carina Coleman, Clifford Schireson and Paul Kaufmann. All three are Mayoral Appointees. Cynthia also reported that Health Care open enrollment went smoothly. SDCERS received a record low number of phone calls during this period. Next month’s SDCERS program will be awesome!
Jim Baross reported on REA’s efforts to help members get health care premium reimbursement for fixed indemnity health plans. The City has denied reimbursement to some members for this type of plan.
The September meeting will cover SDCERS and REA website overviews.
Michael Archuleta won the free lunch raffle.
Dave Twomey recognized the lunch volunteers and introduced the speaker, Dan McAllister, San Diego County Treasurer-Tax Collector. He’s been Tax Collector since 2002. His group provides services in 17 different languages and is committed to diversity. Dan is on the Board of SDCERA and has been involved with several organizations including Habitat for Humanity and the Jackie Robinson YMCA.
Dan McAllister opened with several jokes to warm up his audience. The county has 11.4 billion invested for 210 public agencies. His group manages their money. Dan is concerned about interest rates, he wants to see higher yields. Thinks lower rates may be coming. After elections, rates tend to climb back up.
June 30, 2019 was the deadline to pay property taxes. After that date, a 10% penalty is applied. An additional penalty of 1.5% per month is added to late payments. Most San Diegans, 99%, pay on time. This year his office sent out 993,000 property tax bills. Expects to send over one million next year. This year Dan collected 6.49 Billion in property taxes. He talked about our tax bill and the other assessments that may be added. He discussed legislation that got passed in Sacramento to regulate how local bonds are issued to insure fairness to taxpayers.
Dan reported that the County pension system is doing well. Several key positions have been replaced. Several have come from SDCERS. Regarding property values: valuations are up. It’s a Seller’s market. San Diego needs more housing or values will keep going up. He heard that Oregon has a moratorium on building single family homes. The mission of the Tax Collector’s office is service, first and foremost. On example, is the e-notification program to remind subscribers that their property taxes are due, 343,000 property owners have subscribed.
Dan talked about what he called the Immigrant Dividend. First time college graduates often chose to stay in San Diego. They speak many different languages. The Tax Collector office is hiring many of these grads to service various communities in San Diego County.
Property taxes pay for schools, pot holes, libraries, etc. We need to talk more about housing especially for seniors and the homeless. San Diego needs builders interested in building 6-8 units on a property. Needs more density. Dan answered several questions. One was about Prop 13. Dan pointed out that an issue regarding Prop 13 is coming up for a vote. Prop 13 was passed in 1978. Property taxes are set at 1% of purchase price with a potential 2% increase per year thereafter. The proposal is to lift Prop 13 restrictions on commercial property taxes. Dan feels this may drive some businesses out of California. Another question was about cannabis revenues. He said sales were not as great as expected. It’s cheaper to buy on the illegal market.