A three-month investigation by CBS 13 reveals the list of retired government workers collecting six-figure pensions has grown by more than 3,000 names in the past year.

Citrus Heights accountant Marcia Fritz has been crunching the numbers. “There’s over 12,000 members on the list now,” Fritz told CBS 13. “I was shocked.”

Fritz, a pension reform advocate, is the president of the California Foundation for Fiscal Responsibility. For years Fritz has used public records from CalPERS to document the rapidly expanding $100,000 Club, a membership that has grown from 9,111 names in 2010 to the new total of 12,199 today – a jump of 34%.

Fritz noted that a 2005 CalPERS list indicated there were only 1,841 retirees receiving pensions greater than $100,000.

Read: $100,000 Club in 2005

Fritz indicated the $100,000 Club has grown over 6 ½ times since June, 2005.

“At this rate, the list will be over 78,000 in just five years,” Fritz predicted.

The new Top Ten list includes the name of Randy Adams, the former police chief from the scandal-ridden city of Bell. He’s now collecting a pension of $265,000 a year.

And closer to home, the Club now includes 112 members of the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire Department – an increase of 32% in one year’s time.

But Sac Metro Chief Kurt Henke makes no apologies.

“The bottom line is I’ve buried a lot of my friends that didn’t make it to retirement or lived only a few years after retirement,” Kurt Henke told On The Money.

“With no disrespect to Miss Fritz, I think that certain entities are trying to take advantage of what I’d call the perfect storm in the economy,” Henke added.

The perfect storm is the Great Recession, which caused the stock market to tank. The most recent numbers from CalPERS show an unfunded liability of $51 billion.

“They’ve only got 60 cents for every dollar they need to pay off their pension liabilities,” Marcia Fritz asserted.

CalPERS claims to be 70 to 75% funded.

But the concern is that taxpayers may have to kick in more money to pay out future benefits for retirees. And the alternative may be even worse.

“We’re going to have to hire fewer teachers, fewer policemen, fewer prison guards, fewer everything if we don’t somehow get control over these pensions,” stated Mike Genest, a pension reform advocate with Capitol Matrix Consulting.

Read full article here: http://sacramento.cbslocal.com/2011/11/01/on-the-money-100000-club-update/

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