Wed ping and column
Taxpayers chip in to pay these double dippers
By Howie Carr | Wednesday, March 26, 2008 | http://www.bostonherald.com
Its not just the high cost of pensions thats killing the taxpayers, its the even higher cost of double-dipping.
Check out the new listing of City of Boston pensions now posted at bostonherald.com. Its a stroll down memory lane with the forgotten-but-not-gone brigade. And the funny thing is, some of the coatholders with the top pensions are still chowing down at the public trough, on top of collecting their monthly kiss in the mail.
Come on down former Boston cop Bob Hayden. Retired from the Boston PD in 2000, had a cup of coffee in Lawrence and is now collecting a pension of $63,592.92 a year. Haydens now got himself a job at the MBTA. Hes the assistant general manager for safety, for a cool $110,000 a year.
Then theres former Boston Fire Commissioner Martin E. Pierce Jr. Cashed out four weeks after Bob Hayden in 2000, and now has a city pension of $72,039.96 a year. Would you care to guess where the Comish now works? If you said MBTA, you win! Pierce is now a fire safety consultant for the T, getting paid at the rate of $55 an hour. According to the MBTA, in 2007 Pierce was paid $75,185.
Next we come to the former police commissioner, Francis M. Mickey Roache. Mickey stepped down in 1993, after his Southie pal Ray Flynn gave up the mayors job to become an ambassador. Mickey then got himself elected to the City Council, but has now really died and gone to heaven.
He is the elected register of deeds in Suffolk County - a job that pays $97,270.50 a year. In addition to that, his pension, which he began collecting in 1993, is $43,904.64 a year.
Alas for Mickey, his salary at the courthouse is now less than that of the other local registers, who just got a raise. The problem is, the Suffolk registers salary is set as a percentage of the judges pay. What a terrible injustice for Southies favorite double-dipper. For Gods sake, someone pass a home-rule petition and get Register Roache the raise he so richly deserves. This pay freeze will not stand!
Next comes Paul McCann, veteran Boston Redevelopment Authority (BRA) coatholder. His pension is $96,651.84 a year. But how can everyone at the BRA miss McCann when he wont go away. Hes still there, for 20 hours a week at $127.50 an hour. That works out to $2,550 a week - a four-day week, by the way. He doesnt come in Mondays.
A BRA spokesman said yesterday of his deal: No sick pay, no vacation pay, no benefit pay.
The thing about the City Hall pensions is that theyre inflated by the fact that the hacks down there make so much more than their counterparts, and not just in the Dreaded Private Sector (which is of course expected). They also get more money than comparable state hacks, or even those at the authorities. No wonder the tax rate in the city is so out of sight - it takes big money to keep the Friends of Mumbles happy.
The great thing about pensions is, no one asks you if you were competent at your job. Look at Richie Rouse, an ex-state rep and the one-time High Sheriff of Suffolk County. Worthless as mammaries on a bull. Run out of office on a rail, and now hes grabbing $81,180 a year. For life. Which, considering that Richie Rouse is still only 53 years old, could run into very serious money over the decades.
Talk about forgotten but not gone. How about another ex-fire commissioner, George Paul. He checked out with Mayor Kevin White in January 1984. I still remember one City Council budget hearing where he appeared with a female City Hall lawyer. Councilor Dapper ONeil worked Paul over for a while, then told him to screw. As Paul and the lawyer stood up to leave, the Dap looks at the woman and says:
We wont be needing your services for the next witness, my dear. The next witness plans on telling the truth.
I thought Paul was going to jump over the desk at Dapper he was so angry. Dappers gone now but not Paul. Hes in his 24th year of collecting. His pension: $49,772.04.
Most of the old city councilors are gone now, but some of their children live on. Kitty Craven once threw a shoe at Bill Foley. One son became a judge - that would be Doughnuts Craven. Another son is Brendan, who became a BPD detective. His pension is $56,536.92.
But the king of the kiss in the mail is still Whitey Bulgers little brother Billy. He wanted to be mayor - the Corrupt Midget could taste it he wanted it so bad. But it was not to be. He figured he could succeed Kevin White, but in the end he didnt even run. Ray Flynn won going away.
That was the bad news. The good news is, Billy ran his state pension up to about $200,000 a year, while between them, the pensions of the two mayors, White and Flynn, total $72,000 and change. There must be a lesson here somewhere, but I dont even want to think about what it might be.
Article URL: http://www.bostonherald.com/news/opinion/columnists/view.bg?articleid=1082871
My blood pressure just soared............
Wasn't he always front and center in the "quick picks" backup list?