View other events for the week of 2/11/2015
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|SF Press Conference/Rally Keep Our Pension Money Out Of Hedge Funds! Stop The Specul|
|Date||Wednesday February 11|
|Time||12:00 PM - 1:00 PM|
|Import this event into your personal calendar.|
1245 Market St SF
|Event Type||Press Conference|
|Organizer/Author||United Public Workers For Action|
2/11 SF Press Conference/Rally Keep Our Pension Money Out Of Hedge Funds!Added to the calendar on Sunday Feb 8th, 2015 9:52 PM
Stop The Speculation And Putting 10% Of Our Pension Funds Into Hedge Funds
Racists, Liars And Crooks Out Of SFPERS
Press Conference and RALLY on
February 11,2015 12:00pm 1245 Market St SF
STOP Speculative Investments In Hedge Funds!
Despite the fact that thousands of SF city workers have signed petitions against investing our pension funds into speculative hedge funds, the majority of the PERS Board are continuing with plans to threaten our pension funds. They are pushing ahead and this Tuesday the SFPERS management is pushing for them to vote to put 10% of city worker pension funds into hedge funds.
Even CalPers has pulled out of hedge funds yet we are going in the opposite direction.
The corporate controlled mayor Ed Lee and his billionaire financier pals want to get their hands on our pension funds and they are pushing hedge funds with fees to speculators and union busters. He also just reappointed Wendy Paskin Jordan to the board for a five year term despite her financial conflicts of interest and her malfeasance. She also has said she wants to invest in good “hedge funds” but she has stated that she has no hedge investments in her $674 million Paskin Capital Advisors LLC fund. She was also confirmed unanimously by the Board of Supervisors despite her support for hedge funds and the many financial conflicts of interest which are now bottled up in the Ed Lee controlled Ethics Commission
At the same time, the POA and IFPTE Local 21 leader Bob Mascat are pushing investments from hedge funds and keeping information about the dangers of these hedge funds from their members. This is the same POA that is supporting more militarization of the police and Brian Stansbury who has racially profiled another policeman and also arrested a SF Public Defender for defending her African American client
POA member Brian Stansbury has been sued for racial profiling. Joseph D. Driscoll from the Fire Dep who makes over $200,000 a year and Stansbury are pushing hedge funds and Driscoll is denying that our fund lost over $60 million in a currency hedge fund that he and the majority of the board pushed. We need to organize and educate all city workers and the public to stop this dangerous threat to our retirement security. We also need to remove these people from the board and put in representatives who will defend city workers and not the speculators and politicians who are getting kickbacks by using our pension funds for financial speculation.
Proposition C which unfortunately was supported by the SFLC and most unions blamed public workers for the financial crisis. The city should be paying 100% for our pensions instead of cutting the wages of many of our lower paid workers. The politicians from Governor Brown on down are cost shifting to make public workers pay more while giving tax subsidies to the multi-nationals and billionaires.
At the same time, there are serious conflicts of interest on the pension board. Wendy Paskin Jordon presently has ethics charges against her for financial conflicts of interest and since she is a sales person for financial securities. Why should she be on the board when she is using her position to financially benefit herself?
It is time to protect our pension fund and make sure that we eliminate all conflicts of interest.
Join the press conference and rally in front of the SFERS on February 11, 2015 at 12:00 noon. At 1:00 PM we will be going in an letting the board and management know that enough is enough and we want an end to speculative investments threatening our pensions.
Sponsored by United Public Workers For Action http://www.upwa.info
info [at] upwa.info
SF Cops Arrest Public Defender For Protecting Clients Rights
S.F. public defender detained outside court, office outraged
By Vivian Ho Updated 1:51 pm, Wednesday, January 28, 2015
A San Francisco deputy public defender was taken into custody Tuesday afternoon at the Hall of Justice after she asked why city police officers were questioning her client outside a courtroom, the public defender’s office said Wednesday.
Attorney Jami Tillotson was handcuffed to a bar in a Southern Police Station holding area located at the Hall of Justice at 850 Bryant St. for an hour following what public defender’s office spokeswoman Tamara Barak Aparton called “blatant intimidation” by several police officers.
Police officials did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Tillotson’s client had just made an appearance in Department 17 on the second floor with a co-defendant for a misdemeanor shoplifting charge when he left the courtroom and began getting questioned by a plainclothes police officer, Aparton said.
Tillotson had been conducting an interview with another client in the courtroom’s holding tank when she was alerted of the situation and rushed out into the hallway.
She found her client and his co-defendant “surrounded by police officers,” being asked identifying questions about their height and weight, Aparton said.
“She told the interrogating officer that she was the attorney and he said, 'I just need two minutes with him,’” Aparton said. “When she asked why, he just said it was a police investigation. Then he started basically bullying her, telling her she’s interfering.
“She wasn’t interfering,” Aparton said. “She was just trying to protect her client’s constitutional right to counsel.”
When the officers started taking photos of her client, Tillotson told them that wasn’t necessary, Aparton said, and the officer told her he would arrest her if she continued to interfere.
The plainclothes officer then asked a uniformed officer to cuff her, and she was taken to a Southern Station holding cell. Tillotson was released about an hour later, Aparton said.
The public defender’s office was planning to release surveillance footage of the encounter later Wednesday.
“It’s definitely shocking,” Aparton said.
Vivian Ho is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer. E-mail: vho [at] sfchronicle.com Twitter: @VivianHo
SF Corporate Controlled SF Mayor Ed Lee To Raid City Workers Pension Fund
On the Mayor’s Seven-Point Housing Plan
A Housing Bait-and-Switch?
by Patrick Monette-Shaw
To believe Mayor Ed Lee’s pledge to build 30,000 housing units in San Francisco over the next six short years, you’d also have to believe P.T. Barnum said “There’s a sucker born every minute.” [It wasn’t Barnum who said it; Wikipedia indicates several sources attribute the aphorism to various con men.]
blo-vi-ate (blō′vē-āt′) Intransitive verb: Talking at length 1) in a pompous or boastful manner, or 2) in inflated, empty ways.
Would that be the Mayor’s new-found “affordability agenda”?
For openers, although the mainstream media reported January 17 details of Mr. Mayor’s seven-point plan to solve the City’s number one crisis (affordable housing), the media failed to note the Mayor’s bloviated claim to issue 2,500 down-payment-assistance loans during the next six years — and increase each loan to up to $200,000 — may end up costing a half-billion dollars. The media didn’t report, and apparently didn’t bother asking, where the Mayor plans to come up with a cool $500 million in order to hand out 2,500 interest-free loans within six years.
Will Google, or Twitter — or Ron Conway, and Danielle Steele’s ex-hubby, Tom “Don’t Persecute Billionaires” Perkins — donate upwards of $450 million out of their
collective “tech” deep pockets to make these interest-free loans happen?
“The media failed to note the Mayor’s bloviated claim to issue 2,500 down- payment-assistance loans during the next six years — and increase each loan to up to $200,000 — may end up costing a half- billion dollars.”
Special Favors For Wendy Paskin-Jordan Who Sits On SFERS
INVESTMENT BY SAN FRANCISCO PENSION OFFICIAL RAISES QUESTIONS ABOUT FAVORS
13Dec, 2014 12:12 pm PDTVisited : 2 times | 0 Visits TodayTumblr0WordPress0 0Google +0 0 0 0
As a member of the board that manages the San Francisco pension system, Wendy Paskin-Jordan is tasked with looking out for the financial interests of the city's taxpayers and municipal workers. A prominent financial executive and former San Francisco first lady, she helps oversee a $20 billion pot of funds that are the source of retirement payments for city teachers, cops and firefighters.
But as Paskin-Jordan this week faces a vote on her reappointment to the board, she appears to have blurred the lines between her responsibility to the city and her personal financial interests.
According to financial documents reviewed by the International Business Times, Paskin-Jordan has invested her personal funds in a firm called GMO, which also manages almost $400 million of the San Francisco pension system's money. The documents show that Paskin-Jordan invested in GMO while handing over far less money than the fund's stated minimum investment -- a potentially valuable perk.
Like many cities and states across the country, San Francisco has rules designed to prevent people who manage pension systems from placing personal money in the same entities in which public funds under their supervision are invested. Such rules are designed to prevent Wall Street money managers from courting investment from public pension systems by doling out special terms on the personal investments of pension overseers.
Disclosures that Paskin-Jordan may have run afoul of such restrictions have prompted calls for special scrutiny.
"The ethics commission needs to thoroughly review this,” San Francisco Supervisor John Avalos told IBTimes after the details of the documents were described to him. He is one of the elected officials set to vote this coming week on whether to ratify or reject Mayor Ed Lee's reappointment of Paskin-Jordan to the board.
Paskin-Jordan did not respond to IBTimes' request for comment. However, an official with the San Francisco pension system emailed IBTimes a copy of a letter from the agency’s executive director to the city’s ethics commission defending Paskin-Jordan. The letter says Paskin-Jordan was given the right to invest in the GMO fund at a lower level before she was appointed to the board, and that it’s therefore permissible. Paskin-Jordan didn’t personally invest in GMO until after she was on the pension board.
Paskin-Jordan is merely the latest in a string of public officials whose personal financial investments have tripped concerns over the overlapping interests at work in public pension investment decisions. Just before the New Jersey State Investment Council in 2011 moved state pension money into the control of the giant private equity fund Blackstone, the council chairman's private firm invested in Blackstone. In San Francisco, an investment consultant hired by the city to provide independent advice about hedge funds itself runs a hedge fund in the Cayman Islands.
The firm in which Paskin-Jordan has invested, GMO, has offices in Boston and San Francisco and describes itself as a "private partnership" overseeing roughly $120 billion in assets worldwide. The firm says it primarily serves institutional rather than individual investors.
According to San Francisco pension system documents, GMO has managed city pension money since 1996. The value of San Francisco's holdings managed by the firm are $388 million. At GMO's reported fee rate, that translates to roughly $2 million in fees paid by San Francisco to the firm each year.
In 2010, Paskin-Jordan was appointed to the board of the pension system, which has the power to continue or terminate San Francisco’s investments with GMO. On her financial disclosure forms filed in April 2013 and March 2014, Paskin-Jordan disclosed that in 2011, she invested in the GMO Quality Fund. She did not list that investment on earlier disclosure forms.
San Francisco pension system rules prohibit officers from "invest[ing] money with managers of private equity, limited partnerships and non-publicly traded mutual funds that are doing business with SFERS," which stands for San Francisco Employees Retirement System. While the GMO mutual funds are publicly traded, the minimum amount to be eligible to invest in GMO is $10 million, according to a GMO spokesperson. Paskin-Jordan’s disclosure form shows she was able to invest in GMO with between $100,000 and $1 million.
In filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, GMO says it may "waive eligibility requirements for some persons, accounts, or special situations" including for those with "a substantial ongoing business relationship with GMO." But SFERS rules stipulate that no officer may "accept a business opportunity ... a favor or anything of value from" from a firm contracted to manage SFERS money.
In the letter to the San Francisco Ethics Commission, SFERS Executive Director Jay Huish said that in the mid-2000s -- years before she gained a seat on the pension system board -- two of Paskin-Jordan’s former business colleagues who had gone to work at GMO gave her the right to invest there at below the minimum level.
“Commissioner Paskin-Jordan was offered and accepted that opportunity several years before she became a board member, and thus long before the [rules] applied to her,” Huish wrote. “The fact that she did not make a personal investment until later, after her appointment to the board, does not in my view alter when she accepted that opportunity.”
Santa Clara University’s Ann Skeet, who studies business ethics, told IBTimes that the situation is “problematic.”
“When you serve in a governance role, you are accepting several duties and one of them is to put the interest of the institution above your own, and to keep away from potential conflicts of interest,” Skeet said. “It is surprising to me that as someone who works in the financial industry, she wouldn't have a heightened awareness and take certain steps to make sure that she is not doing things that could be perceived as getting a personal gain from her role on the board.”
Brian Stansbury who is arresting SF Public Defenders for doing their job is being sure for racial profiling and is also pushing hedge funds on the SF Pension Employee Retirement System Board.
Wendy Paskin Jordan has many financial conflicts of interest in the pension board and is for using pension money for hedge funds but has no hedge fund investment in her over $700 million dollar Paskin Capital Advisors which she owns most of.