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Aguirre Calls Mass E-Mail Sent By Union Head a Smear Campaign

Audio

Aired 4/19/09

San Diego City Attorney Mike Aquirre says the head of the city's largest employee union used the city's e-mail system to smear him. It's the latest twist in Aquirre's effort to roll back an increase in pension benefits for city workers. KPBS reporter Ed Joyce has the story.

Aguirre says the president of the Municipal Employees Association , Judie Italiano, inappropriately used city e-mail to rally members against him. He called it a smear campaign tied to his legal efforts to eliminate pension benefit increases granted in 1996 and 2002.

Italiano says she apologized for the e-mail.

Italiano : The city's labor relations manager contacted me and said that this was not a proper use of city e-mail since I did discuss a city official in the e-mail and to not do it again and I told him would not.

Aguirre says he'll investigate whether the union misused government property and offered false and misleading information. Italiano says she welcomes his investigation.

Aguirre's attempts to rollback the pension benefit increases have been turned down in several court rulings, but he says he'll continue the legal battle.

Ed Joyce, KPBS News.

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