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Numbers In City’s Disability System Don’t Add Up

San Diego City Attorney Mike Aguirre is investigating the city's disability retirement system. A newly surfaced report on the issue reveals an inordinate number of retirees are receiving disability benefits. KPBS Reporter Amita Sharma has details.

The report shows that 22 percent of all retirees receive disability retirement checks. And 35 percent of police and firefighter retirees are on disability retirement. City Attorney Mike Aguirre says the numbers are out of whack.

Aguirre: "Out of the 5,000 retirees, 1,231 are on disablity which is substantially above the norm."

The cost of regular service retirement and disability retirement is the same
to the city. But the employees who receive disability pensions get the first 50 percent of their income tax-free until they're 65 years old.

Also the standards that the city's retirement system apply toward determining who receives disability retirement are lower than Social Security's. Amita Sharma, KPBS News.

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