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San Diego Pension Reform Piques Interest Of State Supreme Court

Aired 6/27/12 on KPBS News.

The California Supreme Court could weigh in on San Diego’s recently passed pension initiative.

— California’s Supreme Court wants more information on the dispute over San Diego’s 401(k) retirement initiative.

City unions had filed a compliant with the state’s Public Employment Relations Board, or PERB, alleging city leaders acted improperly in supporting the measure, making it illegal. The issue made its way to Fourth District Court of Appeal, which ordered the city to go through PERB’s administrative process. Proponents of the measure appealed that decision and City Attorney Jan Goldsmith said the state Supreme Court has now asked the unions and PERB for answers to the appeal.

"Requiring an answer is normally a prelude for hearing the matter," he said. "And to us it’s a very good sign that we have the California Supreme Court’s attention on this."

Goldsmith said if the court does hear the issue it could do a number of things, including sending it back to the appeals court, taking the matter on directly, or ordering San Diego to go through the PERB process.

The matter is on an expedited timeline and information is due to the court by July 3. The PERB administrative process is scheduled to begin July 17.

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