The Press Newspaper

Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

The Press Newspaper

The Press Newspaper


Oregon City Council will consider accepting the retirement of long time city Law Director Paul Goldberg, who is negotiating terms with Mayor Mike Seferian and City Administrator Mike Beazley that would include getting rehired at a cheaper rate of pay for two years while he draws a retirement check.

Goldberg submitted a letter of retirement to Seferian that becomes effective April 30.

“Mr. Beazley and I kind of negotiated a possible contract that council will have to concur with because the law director serves at the pleasure of council,” Seferian said at a council meeting last Monday. “But the desire is that Mr. Goldberg does expect to work for the city, preferably for an additional two years, as an employee. After this retirement, Mr. Goldberg would have to stop working for the city for 60 days, then he could enter into an agreement or contract to come back as an employee.”

Seferian said the deal would save the city over $100,000 if it is approved.

“With this change in the way we would chose to do business with Mr. Goldberg, it would save the city from our past practices by an amount that exceeds about $100,000 per year,” said Seferian.

After the meeting, Beazley told The Press that Goldberg’s salary as law director was approximately $170,000 annually. Upon approval of council, a proposed deal would allow him to return as law director for two years at an annual salary of $50,000 plus benefits.

“Depending on the nature of the litigation and the casework, he’s averaged about $170,000 per year in total compensation over the last two years,” said Beazley.

The practice of “double-dipping,” where government officials retire to receive their public pensions, only to return to the same government position with a salary, has increasingly come under fire by a penny pinching public that has grown weary struggling with their own finances in a severe recession.

Beazley said the city, nonetheless, will save money with the deal.

“Our objective for Oregon is to get outstanding service, and to pay less money,” said Beazley.

“During the two years he would choose to serve with us,” said Seferian at the meeting, “would give us time to put ourselves in shape to see where council chooses to go with appointing a new law director or if any changes would be made in how they want to proceed with the law director’s position.”

Between the 60 days of Goldberg’s retirement and re-employment with the city, legal questions regarding the city would first be referred to Beazley, who has a law degree, said Seferian.

“A lot of those things, he may be able to handle. But as an acting law director during that interim, we expect Tom Dugan to be actual law director by title. So we feel we would be able to cover the position of law director in the absence of those days. So with the understanding that Mr. Goldberg would be available for employment with the city 60 days after April 30, I would ask council to accept his letter of retirement, effective April 30, 2011,” said Seferian.

Council then voted unanimously to accept Goldberg’s retirement.

The deal to rehire Goldberg is not yet completed and would have to be approved by council.

“Council, this is really your decision,” said Seferian. “So I suspect you would talk to Mr. Goldberg to get an understanding of what our recommendation would be. But ultimately, in the end, it would be up to you to decide how this transpires from here. But I think what we are proposing looks to be a pretty good deal for the city. If you choose to change or alter the law director [position], you have roughly two years to do that. I would appreciate any comments or questions you have for us so we can operate like we’ve been.”

Beazley said the proposed deal to rehire Goldberg is a decision based on a lean budget during a difficult economy.

“From a dollar savings perspective to the bottom line, this interim approach could save us a little over $100,000 a year, and it would be good for us to pursue. Ultimately, we would look at the next council meeting to bring in a recommendation, and council would have an opportunity to debate and react to it. In the meantime, if you want to administration or to Mr. Goldberg, I would recommend that,” said Beazley.

Giving money to people along road

Do you feel compelled to give money to people holding signs along the road asking for money?
1451424210 [{"id":"10","title":"No, I'm not sure they're legitimate.","votes":"22","pct":64.71,"type":"x","order":"1","resources":[]},{"id":"11","title":"No, I'm afraid they will use it for drugs.","votes":"8","pct":23.53,"type":"x","order":"2","resources":[]},{"id":"12","title":"Yes, I feel good about helping someone down on their luck.","votes":"3","pct":8.82,"type":"x","order":"3","resources":[]},{"id":"13","title":"Yes, we could all end up like that.","votes":"1","pct":2.94,"type":"x","order":"4","resources":[]}] ["#194e84","#3b6b9c","#1f242a","#37414a","#60bb22","#f2babb"] sbar 160 160 /communitypolls/vote/1-root.html?Itemid=246&id=5 No answer selected. Please try again. Thank you for your vote. Answers Votes ...