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Image: falseStatement: “(Carl DeMaio) also proposes eliminating the Deferred Retirement Option Plan (DROP), which costs the city approximately $150 million annually by allowing city employees to return to a salaried job while concurrently drawing their retirement payouts,” Carl DeMaio, San Diego councilman and mayoral candidate, on his campaign website.

Determination: False

Analysis: There’s no more notorious pension benefit than DROP. The benefit allows employees to retire but keep working and earn a salary. They also earn a pension, which accrues in an account and later is paid out with interest.

DeMaio proposes to eliminate DROP as part of his mayoral platform. But his campaign website gave the wrong timeframe for the plan’s costs. He said it costs $150 million annually. Actually, the $150 million price tag is spread over a long time, according to a February city analysis. The analysis doesn’t give any specific timeframe, but Independent Budget Analyst Andrea Tevlin provided a rough estimate of 80 years. It’s worth noting that the $150 million figure is in today’s dollars and doesn’t account for inflation.

DeMaio’s campaign spokesman acknowledged the error and said the claim would be corrected right away. The website now says the $150 million cost comes “over the life of the program.”

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Liam Dillon

Liam Dillon was formerly a senior reporter and assistant editor for Voice of San Diego. He led VOSD’s investigations and wrote about how regular people...

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