Scranton Officials Improperly Doubled Pension Payments To City Workers
Scranton’s double-pension payments – offered as a retirement incentive to 35 city workers – were improperly implemented, and cost the city $2.9 million in unapproved costs.
State Auditor General Eugene DePasquale released a report this morning which found “the transactions surrounding the doubling of pension payments revealed a disregard for the applicable laws governing pension plans by the officials charged with fiduciary responsibility for the Plan – the Mayor, City Council, and the Pension Board.”
Then Mayor Chris Doherty left office in 2014. The Auditor General’s office didn’t immediately respond if any Council or Board members from that time are still in office.
Scranton offered 25 non-uniform employees double-pensions in 2002 in an attempt to address the city’s budget. The city is in Act 47 – Pennsylvania’s distressed cities program – and wanted to eliminate jobs as part of its recovery plan. In 2007, after a lawsuit, an additional 10 city employees were deemed eligible for the 2002 incentive and granted double-pensions.