Pension Funding: A History Lesson

Several years ago Hamden Daily News Editor Sharon Bass took a look at pension contributions over time. Here's what she found, with more recent data added.


Editor's note: We apologize that the columns are not straight, they just refused to cooperate.


Fiscal Year                 Mayor’s Recommendation           Council Approved

1979-80             Lucien Dimeo (R)             $1.02m                        $1.02M

1980-81             Dick Harris (D)                $1.24M                         $1.24M

1981-82             Dick Harris (D)                  $1.4M                            $1.4M

1982-83             Peter Villano (D)              $1.75M                          $1.75M

1983-84             Peter Villano                    $2.14M                          $2.28M

1984-85             Peter Villano                    $2.65M                          $2.65M

1985-86             Peter Villano                      $2.9M                            $2.9M

1986-87             John DeNicola Jr. (R)              $3M                              $3M

1987-88             John DeNicola Jr.              $3.78M                         $3.78M

1988-89             John Carusone (D)            $4.37M                        $4.37M

1989-90             John Carusone,                 $4.75M                          $4.5M

1990-91             John Carusone,                 $4.77M                        $4.27M

1991-92             John Carusone,                 $4.27M                        $4.27M

1992-93             Lillian Clayman (D)            $4.27M                        $4.27M

1993-94             Lillian Clayman                  $4.27M                       $4.27M

1994-95             Lillian Clayman,                 $4.27M                       $4.27M

1995-96             Lillian Clayman,                   $4.5M                       $4.25M

1996-97             Lillian Clayman,                   $4.5M                         $4.5M

1997-98             Lillian Clayman,                      $4M                            $4M

1998-99             Barbara DeNicola (R)             $4.4M                     $1.75M

1999-00             Barbara DeNicola,                 $1.5M                             $0

2000-01             Carl Amento, (D)                        $0                             $0

2001-02             Carl Amento,                   $250,000                            $0

2002-03             Carl Amento,                   $500,000                  $500,000

2003-04             Carl Amento,                           $1M                         $1M

2004-05             Carl Amento,                           $3M                         $3M

2005-06             Carl Amento,                           $6M                         $6M

2006-07             Craig Henrici, (D)                      $9M                        $9M

2007-08             Craig Henrici,                           $12M                      $12M

2008-09             Craig Henrici,                        $13.5M                   $12.6M

2009-10             Craig Henrici,                       $12.75M                 $12.75M

2010-11             Scott Jackson                         $7.35M                   $6.9M

2011-12             Scott Jackson                         $3.685M            $3.670M

2012-12             Scott Jackson                           $9.3M                 $9.34M


Sandy May 15, 2012 at 02:46 PM
I wonder what amount the retirement board recommended for each of these years.
Charles Baltayan May 15, 2012 at 04:05 PM
The town performs audits by Certified Public Accountants every year and at least since 2007, the auditors have advised about the pension plan and offered options to put the town on stable footing. The Politicians (because they clearly are not acting as civil servants) acted in political ways, did not act in the best interest of the taxpayer or the plan member and did not heed the auditors advice and warnings. The pension plan should be discontinued and converted to 401K or other, more normal, type of plan as the auditors suggested as early as 2008 and the sooner the better without any political manuevering like the Administration and the LC are trying to railroad.
Marty May 15, 2012 at 04:28 PM
By the looks of this, the problem really started with DiNicola and continued with Amento. The councils during that time put nothing or close to nothing in the fund. Why they would do that I have no idea but we are sure paying for it now.
Charles Baltayan May 15, 2012 at 07:03 PM
The problem is making deals for votes, promises and spending that can't be afforded. Budgeting is not rocket science (most of the world does it daily and well) and holding poiticians accountable for their past political actions, although quite obvious, is frowned upon. Let us hold the Mayor and LC personally responsible and let's see how fast the budget can balance....
Ted B May 16, 2012 at 05:37 PM
Putting nothing in the pension fund for years was pure stupidity. And that was during the good economic times -- do these people have absolutely no foresight? It is the voter's fault, voting in the same people over and over just because they have a D after their name. People in Hamden have to wake up and start voting for Republicans before the state does take over this town, and then we're all in big trouble. The Democrats are destroying Hamden and the people are just sitting back and watching.
LINDA May 16, 2012 at 06:31 PM
I agree totally. Start letting the Republicans have a shot here people before we all go broke. Dems have had enough chances here.
bob maturo May 18, 2012 at 06:16 PM
Sandy, you asked the important question. The study performed every 2 years by the pension board is the true dollar figure that should have been put into the fund. If the mayor and the Council followed that figure we would not be in this mess.
KMO March 20, 2013 at 11:27 AM
Well while I don't totally disagree with getting another party in there for a while, by the looks of things, this pension underfunding started with Barbara DiNicola and she was a Republican!
GerryGag March 20, 2013 at 12:07 PM
KatieM, if you look closely, in 1998-1999 Barbara DeNicola , proposed 4.4M, and the council (which was primarily Democrats at that time I believe) only approved 1.75M. And then in 1999-2000 when she tried to get 1.5M into the fund, the council approved 0. Let's not try to place the blame of this on a political party or one single individual. There are quite a few people (mayors and council members) who are actually responsible for this mess, and they really should be ashamed of themselves and what they have done and continue to do to all of the people in this town.


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