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Police Disability Retirements "Spike" As MoCo Seeks Changes

The number of Montgomery County police officers applying for disability retirement has risen dramatically in the last three months compared to the same period last year, according to statistics provided this afternoon to the County Council.

The jump from 5 last year to 15 this year - comes as the council weighs legislation meant to provide more oversight of the system that has come under scrutiny by the independent inspector general's office.

County Council President Phil Andrews (D-Gaithersburg-Rockville) called the numbers "striking" and said the "clear spike" reflects "officers trying to get through the system before it is reformed and becomes more rigorous."

But Council member Valerie Ervin (D-Silver Spring) cautioned against reading too much into the numbers. "We're only looking at a little snapshot," she said. "I don't think it gives us anything to go on."

Union leaders have pressed the council not to act on legislation until they have a chance to negotiate changes with County Executive Isiah Leggett (D).


By Ann Marimow  |  February 19, 2009; 3:44 PM ET
Categories:  Ann Marimow , Montgomery County  
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As Council Member Ervin stressed, this increase really kind of makes good sense. When Management get this serious about change the rule, any police officer who was considering retirement will now submit their papers. They would be fools not to - until they see what the "reformed" system looks like.

As we all know, changes to retirement systems can be fair and well-planned OR they can be desperate, exclusionary and very unfair. If I had any disability or serious injury issues and was eligible for retirement, I would submit request papers as a contingency also. The worst case (and I hope this does not happen) is that the department could cave in to insurance corporations and force retiring officers' disability status to be determined solely by the insurance companies' "medical specialists", which pretty much ensures that no one will ever be found to have any degree of disability.

Posted by: free-donny | February 20, 2009 9:00 AM | Report abuse

The problem now is that everyone is being found to have a disability and homeowners are being used as an ATM.

Posted by: robinfickerofrobinrealty | February 20, 2009 4:53 PM | Report abuse

With all due respect Ficker,

Is 15 (MAXIMUM as it stands now) really suitable to call "Everyone"?

Posted by: free-donny | February 22, 2009 12:46 AM | Report abuse

I was curious so I looked up Phil's so called living wage what he calls the "working poor". It is 12.40/hr which is 25,792 a year. If a new officer gets hurt their salary is 46,972 which is reducded by the 52% disabilty reduction after he/she is forced out it is then 24,425 11.74/hr. WOW what a revelation he wants to keep the police someone who injured themselves in service to their community below the countys acceptaple "living wage". Does Phil hate the POPO?????

Posted by: gman121 | February 22, 2009 4:22 PM | Report abuse

PLUS the working poor living at a so called living wage would be able to get a second job and make more per year. The banished officer would have their disabilty pay reduced just to make sure they are under the living wage. I wonder if Phil wants the banished officer on welfare or would he cut that out too? I wonder what Phil's salary is probably over 100,000. I wonder how he makes it on such a low wage for a public servant?

Posted by: gman121 | February 22, 2009 4:56 PM | Report abuse

Phil said:
County Council President Phil Andrews (D-Gaithersburg-Rockville) called the numbers "striking" and said the "clear spike" reflects "officers trying to get through the system before it is reformed and becomes more rigorous."

question is more rigorous or more bias?
Do these officers know something we don't? Is Phil union busting?
Jefferon said it best:

Experience hath shewn, that even under the best forms of government those entrusted with power have, in time, and by slow operations, perverted it into tyranny.
Thomas Jefferson

Posted by: gman121 | February 22, 2009 6:13 PM | Report abuse

gman121, you raise interesting an age when almost all of us have seen our pensions ad benefits reduced...or experienced attempts ro reduce benefits. These officers are not stupid or oblivious to the ravaged U.S. economy. They deserve a fair break. Why would anyone argue against that?

Posted by: free-donny | February 22, 2009 8:15 PM | Report abuse

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