Former Baltimore Mayor Dixon speaks out against City Council's vote on the pension plan

former baltimore mayor dixon speaks out against city council's vote on the pension plan

Former Baltimore Mayor Dixon speaks out against City Council’s vote on the pension plan

Former Baltimore Mayor Sheila Dixon is speaking out against the City Council’s vote on the pension plan this week.  According to Dixon, when the council voted they were not aware of a particular city charter at best or simply, ignored it, at worst.

The new pension plan bill passed on Monday.  The legislation approved reduces the number of years city elected leaders must serve to earn lifetime benefits for what’s classified as part-time work.

But for Dixon, “my first thought was why didn’t this go to that commission?”

Dixon is suggesting that vote by the council should not have happened, the legislation was not proposed by any member of the council.  Instead, she said, the matter should have been handled by the city’s compensation commission not pushed and sponsored by City Council President Nick Mosby

“Somebody in finance and retirement should have, when the bill was introduced and I don’t know whether or not this happened or not, should’ve shared with him that this commission is in place,” said Dixon.

It was Dixon when she was city council president, who established legislation for the compensation commission, a panel that removes all salary and benefits proposals regarding elected officials from the hands of members of the City Council.

The commission was established after 71 percent of Baltimore voters approved an amendment to the city charter in the 2006 election.

Still, the City Council and Mosby fast-tracked the pension bill.

“President Mosby he just seemed adamant on getting this passed and that raises some questions when you have this commission,” said Dixon.

Reporter:  “What’s the main question it raises for you?”

Dixon:  “When I came on to the council, many years ago I never thought about the pension and the salary because our salary was very low, my whole thrust was what can I do to improve Baltimore.”

Reporter:  “Are you suggesting maybe he’s a bit more self-serving, he did this for self-serving purposes?”

Dixon:  “I do believe that this bill based on doing it at eight years is very self-serving.”

The approved bill will allow council members and other city elected officials to become eligible for full pensions after serving for 8 years, down from 12.

Mosby, who sponsored the bill, claims the change is necessary after Baltimore city voters overwhelmingly passed question-k on election day, a measure which limits elected city leaders to two four-year terms in the same office over a 12-year period.

Still, criticism of the council president’s move from a former mayor.

“I would think that since he was on the council years ago that he would have been familiar with the commission that was created,” said Dixon.

FOX45  News reached out to Mosby’s office.  We sent an email that included the question; are you aware of the city’s compensation committee?

We had not heard back by news time late Wednesday.

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