Phoenix council members call for hearing on pension spiking

phoenix logoPhoenix City Council Members Sal DiCiccio, Thelda Williams and Jim Waring sent a formal request to Mayor Stanton requesting he schedule a public hearing on pension spiking as soon as possible.

The request calls for the Mayor to add pension spiking to the next regularly scheduled Policy Session or Formal Meeting, whichever works best.

The elimination of pension spiking requires a public vote and discussion. It has been 612 days since the public was promised an end to pension spiking by Phoenix Mayor Stanton. “It’s time to end pension spiking, it’s time to keep the promise to end it, and it is time to schedule a public meeting and vote. So we now need to go directly to the voters to put the pressure on the politicians,” said Councilman DiCiccio.

After six letters and a request for a personal meeting with Mayor Stanton, Councilman Sal DiCiccio launched an online petition hoping to get a public meeting and a vote to end pension spiking.

DiCiccio, a staunch opponent of the practice, has maintained pension spiking is in direct violation of the Arizona Constitution. In every communication to the Mayor’s office, he has requested a public discussion and vote so the public can know where the Mayor and Council stand on the practice. Pension spiking has contributed to Phoenix’s $2.4 billion unfunded pension liability.

The Goldwater Institute recently filed a lawsuit against Phoenix to end the practice. Delaying council action puts Phoenix in legal jeopardy.

“I figured after seven attempts to contact the Mayor, it was time for a new approach. Hopefully, this petition will get his attention. 613 days without a public discussion or vote is no longer acceptable. Everyday wasted is another day taxpayers are left footing the bill for extravagant pension packages. It is time to schedule a vote,” said Councilman DiCiccio.

The online petition can be found at


  1. Here is what The Arizona Republic recently wrote about Phoenix’s pension spiking practice:
    “The city allows public-safety officers at the end of their careers to cash in unused sick leave and vacation, deferred compensation, payment for emergency shifts, bonuses, and vehicle and cellphone allowances, counting all as compensation. The inflated compensation significantly increases or “spikes” annual retirement benefits — and the cost to taxpayers. All public-safety employees are allowed to spike, though the most costly cases have been top managers at the high end of the pay range.”
    “10 retirees to boost their lump-sum retirement benefits to more than $700,000 each through the Deferred Retirement Option Plan. All also receive annual pensions greater than $114,000 a year, and some also cashed out additional unused sick leave and vacation for more than $100,000 each.”

  2. Must have missed something. I have an idea, but what exactly is “pension spiking? Probably should have explained it.

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