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I know you want to keep up with the latest news from the fabulous city of Bell, so here it is: 

[City manager Robert] Rizzo, whose forced-resignation could come as early as Thursday, would be entitled to a pension of at least $600,000 a year for the rest of his life, according to retirement calculations made by The Times and reviewed by pension experts….Not far behind would be Randy Adams, the man Rizzo hired as Bell police chief last July. If Adams steps down, his pension would be worth an estimated $411,300.

….Cristina Garcia, who grew up in Bell and is part of a newly formed citizen’s group, said fat pensions are another insult to city residents. “It’s unethical and immoral, that’s obvious,” she said. “What’s amazing is that it is all legal.”

Legal, baby, legal! Pensions, of course, depend heavily on just a small number of your highest paid years in the system, and Adams’s pension, which was about $200,000 after serving in Glendale for 37 years, has doubled in just the single year he’s been at Bell.

The Bell city council, which presumably set these salaries in the first place, and which pays itself outrageous salaries as well, will meet tonight in closed session to figure out what to do about this. Something tells me we can all guess the outcome.

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily bluster—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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