Dallas City Council Agenda for Dec. 7: Dallas Police and Fire Pension Fund All Day Long

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Screen Shot 2016-12-06 at 11.28.55 AMThis is one of the biggest pickles Dallas, or really any U.S. city, has been in.

As we have mentioned, the police and fire pension is asking the taxpayers of Dallas to make up a $1.1 billion shortfall. At the same time, the police are SUING Dallas for $4 illion in back pay, IF they are victorious in ther lawsuit.

The mayor of Dallas has personally filed a lawsuit against the fund, asking it to put a halt to the DROP program, which he maintains is bleeding it. And the Dallas City Council will be hashing it out all day tomorrow.

A real estate connection: the mayor’s lawyer, by the way, is Mike Gruber, husband of Dave Perry-Miller’s Diane Gruber, father of Dave Perry-Miller’s Becky Gruber.

There are a trifecta of issues to consider, and Jennifer Staubach Gates sent the entire briefing to her email list. That woman is the queen of transparency.

On the one hand, we have the police filing suit against the city of Dallas, the taxpayers, in a lawsuit that goes way back to 1994, more than twenty years ago. The lawsuit is over a pay differential: that is, the police say that every time the city gives one member or group of members (such as new recruits) on he force a raise, everyone on the force gets one. Whole new meaning to “Let the force be with you.” Dallas says no, but a stupid state law from 2005 is fueling that flame.

We have put the briefing up for all to read. Of note:

Screen Shot 2016-12-06 at 11.27.04 AM Screen Shot 2016-12-06 at 11.28.10 AM

-Most uniform employees (57%) will receive at least a 25% pay increase over 3 years…

-“While we refer to the City’s Budget as $3.1B, actually: • $1.2B is the current year general fund budget which supports much of what people relate to: • Police, Fire, Parks, Libraries, Streets, etc. • Police and Fire’s footprint is $733M or 61% of that budget • $615M of this is for Police and Fire compensation”

-Police Officer starting pay (with bachelor’s degree) will be $55,288 10 • 16% – Percent of Police Officers who are currently topped out • 21% – Percent of Police Officers who will be topped out after a double step • 28% – Percent of Police Officers who will top out with 2-1-2 $- $20,000 $40,000 $60,000 $80,000 $100,000 $120,000 $- $20,000 $40,000 $60,000 $80,000 $100,000 $120,000 Base Pay Special Pay Total Pay Dallas provides significant compensation in the form of “Special Pay” including: • Education pay $3,600/year • Certification pay $7,200/year With Special Pay, Dallas’ pay for senior officers is very competitive with the market Top Pay for Police Officer Rank 11 Top Pay for Senior Corp.

-Among peer group cities, Dallas has most generous DROP. Fort Worth, San Antonio and El Paso offer no interest on DROP. Austin and Houston do not offer interest on DROP for Police. Dallas DROP accounts were credited between 8-10%, with an average compound annual growth rate of 8.9%

-Deferred Retirement Option Program (DROP)

Highest DROP account value: $4.3 million

Average DROP account value: $597,000

Number of accounts over $1 million: 517

PS: It’s also Pearl Harbor Day…


Candy Evans

A real estate muckraker, Candy Evans is one of the nation’s leading real estate reporters. She is also the North Texas real estate editor for Forbes.com, CultureMap Dallas, Modern Luxury Dallas, & the Katy Trail Weekly. Candy has written for Joel Kotkin’s The New Geography, Inman Real Estate News, plus a host of national sites. Constantly breaking celebrity real estate news, she scooped former president George W. Bush's Dallas home in 2008. She is the founder and publisher of her signature CandysDirt.com, and SecondShelters.com, devoted to the vacation home market. Her verticals have won many awards, including Best Blog by the venerable National Association of Real Estate Editors, one of the nation’s oldest and most prestigious journalism associations. Candy holds an active Texas real estate license but does not sell. She is on the Board of Directors of Braemar Hotels & Resorts (BHR).

Reader Interactions


  1. CRITIC says

    Detroit did a BK
    New York did a BK
    Both cities are still in existence
    If Dallas did a BK immediately what would happen to my property taxes? I don’t care about Dallas bond holders or future bond rates. A city should not be able to issue bonds but be forced to live within their income
    Maybe the DROP cops would pull back on their demands.
    Can some of your followers explain options ?
    Seems like a big bluff to me
    All I can imagine is I am likely to pay more taxes for crappy roads, crappy schools, and deterioting services

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