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Retired Barstow city manager resurfaces in Riverside County
Rowe will earn $108k at new job on top of $228k pension
Former Barstow City Manager Richard Rowe, who retired in 2010, has come out of retirement to take the reins of Canyon Lake, a gated community in Riverside County, the North County Times reported.
Rowe, 70, will earn $108,000 per year from Canyon Lake. Because he will only be working 19 hours per week, he will be able to collect his $228,696 annual pension from the California Public Employees Retirement System as well, CalPERS spokesperson Amy Norris said.
Canyon Lake will not provide Rowe with any additional benefits.
Rowe, 70, who previously left retirement to work as Barstow’s interim city manager for two years, also was coaxed out of retirement to run Needles before that.
Rowe will work three days a week for Canyon Lake and will be on call for a fourth day, according to the North County Times. He will also receive $500 per month to drive the approximately 45-mile commute from his home in Chino. Barstow once paid Rowe a $1,900 per month car allowance for the same drive, on top of Rowe’s $232,800 annual salary.
Rowe told the North County Times he applied for the job because he was bored since leaving Barstow after his Dec. 31, 2010 retirement. Rowe retired with over 40 years of service with public entities throughout Southern California.
Norris said that CalPERS’ pension levels were determined by a variety of factors, and all of the state entities that employed Rowe over his career were, in effect, contributing the funds that finance his retirement.
In his new job, Rowe will be limited to working no longer than 960 hours per year and must leave his Canyon Lake post within one year, Norris said. Canyon Lake could request the state allow Rowe to work more hours, but only for the first year, Norris said.
Critics call such moves from public employees “double-dipping,” and Gov. Jerry Brown has proposed curtailing the practice. State Sen. Joe Simitian, D-Palo Alto, introduced a bill last year to ban retirees from returning to work within 180 days of their retirement, a standard Rowe would meet because he waited almost 19 months since his retirement from the city of Barstow.
The Barstow City Council hired City Manager Curt Mitchell to replace Rowe in November 2010.
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