Critics of Sutter officials to rally
Critics of Sutter County supervisors and administrators have scheduled a rally Thursday “to make an announcement pertaining to this year's elections and certain elected officials.”
Citizens for Change, a loosely-knit group that includes members of other local activist groups, including the Sutter County Taxpayers Association, will gather at noon Thursday at the Sutter County Hall of Records, 466 Second St., Yuba City.
“Taxpayers and citizens are urged to come,” said Pat Miller, Citizens for Change spokeswoman.
Rumors are afoot of possible recall elections this year against Supervisors Jim Whiteaker and Dan Silva and possible candidates to run against two supervisors up for re-election this year, Dennis Nelson and Larry Munger.
Munger, of District 3, and Nelson, of District 2, have taken out candidate “petitions in lieu” to avoid filing fees for the June 6 election. No potential challengers had taken out petitions as of Monday, according to county Assistant Registrar Linda Winter.
In announcements that began arriving Saturday in mailboxes, Citizens for Change, or C4C for short, said there is “growing evidence of the abuse of power on the part of certain county officials.”
About 500 announcements were mailed, said Miller.
There is “so much abuse that citizens have finally had enough, and have formed this organization to reclaim our county and return it to openness, honesty, integrity and cost-effectiveness, attributes that no longer exist in the top levels of Sutter County government,” the announcement said.
Miller said the new .7 percent at 55” retirement package for county employees is a central issue. The package already has resulted in a $31 million debt to the California Public Employees Retirement system, she said.
The package entitles employees to retire at age 55 with annual payments amounting to 2.7 percent of their top salary for each year of employment. They also receive Social Security.
County Administrator Larry Combs called the $31 million figure a rough estimate. Combs and other officials have said the package was needed to attract and retain quality employees in the county government.
A CalPERS official told the Appeal-Democrat recently that the package is at the higher end of those given to county employees but that other factors, including the salaries on which the formula is based, must be taken into account in an overall comparison with other counties.
Appeal-Democrat reporter Rob Young can be reached at 749-4710. You may e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.