Local 21-led Campaign Ensures Retirement Protections for former RDA Workers

In 2012, Governor Brown eliminated all state Redevelopment Agencies. This had a huge impact on our members who work on some of the largest affordable housing and economic development projects in San Francisco. Redevelopment Agencies were state — not local — entities, so they generally made use of the California Public Employee Retirement System (CalPERS) to administer retirement health benefits. While some local cities also use CalPERS, San Francisco has its own Health System for retired public employees. Our Redevelopment members, having worked to better San Francisco for years, but now unable to get City and County of San Francisco retiree healthcare benefits, were in a very difficult situation. With the support of IFPTE Local 21 and SEIU 1021, San Francisco Supervisor Maliah Cohen authored Proposition D.  The measure amends the City Charter allowing Local 21 members who are former employees of San Francisco Redevelopment Agency to get credit for time spent working there toward their tenure at city agencies for the purpose of determining their eligibility for San Francisco retiree health benefits. In conjunction with a campaign, spearheaded by Local 21 to collect endorsements from over 20 local democratic clubs and almost every local politician, the 24 Local 21 members in the Chapter volunteered over 30 shifts in support of Proposition D. In a huge victory for Local 21 on November 4, Proposition D passed by 56 percent.