The Oakdale Irrigation District Board of Directors recently unanimously approved a resolution to terminate the contract between the district and the Board of Administration of the California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS). Due to sustainability concerns and escalating costs associated with the retirement program, the board has expressed concerns and has heard presentations from CalPERS staff. The board directed OID staff to evaluate the options and came up with the need to use strong wording like “contract termination” apparently in order to get the financials they need to study the feasibility.
According to minutes from the most recent regular meeting, the Board of Directors told staff to work with CalPERS on the steps required to find out the cost of a buy-out from CalPERS and the impact it would have. The OID moved forward with adopting the resolution with wording about termination of the contract in order to get an actuarial evaluation from CalPERS.
The minutes further show that Operating Engineers Local #3 (OE3) business representative Mike Eggener expressed concern over the wording in the resolution and asked that the “termination” portion be changed to show the OID was requesting an estimate.
OID Chief Financial Officer Kathy Cook said that a CalPERS representative advised her that the wording not be changed in the resolution, adding that this was a necessary step in order to get the actuarial information. Cook added that there would be time to rescind the request for the contract’s termination after the actuarial is received. It was also stated in the minutes that similar requests by other state and local agencies contracting with CalPERS have resulted in an actuarial backlog of up to six months.