Dozens of California Assembly employees can thank the state's fiscal crisis for padding their pensions through a controversial program pushed by Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez before he was termed out last year.
Fifty-five Assembly employees received "golden handshakes" that can be worth thousands annually by awarding two years of extra service credits for retiring by last month, records show.
Recipients included nine aides to Nunez – eight of whose salaries exceeded $90,000 per year.
Prominent retirees included Danny Eaton and Steve Maviglio, who left jobs paying $212,000 and $175,000, respectively, the former as Nunez's chief of staff and the latter as press secretary for the Assembly speaker's office.
The Assembly program was touted as a way to trim payroll without layoffs during a fiscal emergency. But Assemblyman Hector de la Torre opposed its passage last March, calling it a potential taxpayer ripoff and an apparent form of gratitude – "icing on the cake" – by the termed-out Nunez to long-time employees.
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