A judge has rejected an effort by Bell's former police chief to more than double his pension to $510,000 a year, saying that the City Council never approved his extravagant contract and that city officials tried to keep his salary secret.
Randy Adams, who was fired as the city was engulfed in scandal, would have become one of the highest paid public pensioners in California had his request been approved.
The cost of doubling Adams' pension would have fallen primarily on Ventura, Simi Valley and Glendale, where he spent most of his career. Ventura alone would have been on the hook for nearly $2 million of Adams' future pension, according to state pension officials.
The ruling leaves Adams with a $240,000-a-year pension, the eighth highest paycheck in California's largest public employee retirement system
The decision follows a three-day hearing in Orange County last month in which Adams asserted his 5th Amendment right against self-incrimination 20 times.
"It's justice for the citizens of Bell and justice for the citizens of California who start to take a stand against pension abuse," City Manager Doug Willmore said. "It tells Randy Adams what he did was clearly wrong, and he knew it or should have known it."