Pensions, politics and transit-oriented development will take center stage in San Rafael on March 27, when the North Bay Business Journal presents a gathering of experts in those fields for its Impact Marin conference.
A perspective on public pensions from two points of view will kick off with a presentations by two experts on public-sector retirement plans: Chuck Reed and Randy Dziubek.
Reed was mayor of San Jose from 2007 to 2014. The city faced years of cutting services to balance its budget, so he created a fiscal reform plan which included a pension reform plan approved by 70 percent of voters. San Jose restored some services by saving millions of dollars.
A key part of that plan was changes in the pension system, Reed said. Now, he is a founder of the Retirement Security Initiative, which focuses on public-sector retirement plans.
The examination of pensions at the conference also will include a presentation by Dziubek, deputy chief actuary for the California Public Employees' Retirement System, or CalPERS. It is the largest public pension fund in the country, serving more than 1.9 million members in retirement. The organization states that 38 percent of its members work in school districts, 31 percent in public agencies and another 31 percent in state government. It reports paying out $21 billion in annual benefit payments.
The number of employers in the program is nearly 2,900, most of which are public agencies, followed by school districts and the state of California.
As measures to insure financial stability, CalPERS reported it has changed its asset allocations, shorten it amortization for employers to pay their unfunded liability and lowered its assumed rate of return from 7.5 to 7 percent.
A take on the new governor’s first 100 days and an overview of politics will be offered by political commentator Brian Sobel. Now the principal consultant for Sobel Communications in Petaluma, Sobel is in a unique position to assess the beginning of Gov. Gavin Newsom's term.
Sobel has run for public office, served on the Petaluma City Council and various transportation and nonprofit boards, and provided political commentary for television and radio.
Laulima Development President David Bouquillon will offer a special look at how a real estate developer can address issues of transit-oriented development.
His company has broken ground on the transformation of a 300,000-square-foot former State Farm Insurance property in Rohnert Park into an retail, residential and office center. That $400 million project, called Station Avenue, includes innovative ways address transit issues within the development. Specific Uber and Lift drop-off points throughout the development are included in the planning for what will become a downtown hub for the city.
Bouquillon has more than 25 years of extensive development and construction experience in mixed-use urban real estate development. He served as the senior director for notable mixed-use projects such as Bay Street Emeryville, Santana Row, San Jose, and The Historic Guasti District in Ontario.
The conference will be held at the Embassy Suites hotel in San Rafael from 7:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. Tickets are $75 per person or $775 for a table of 10. Registration, which closes March 25, at nbbj.news/im19
Underwriters are Bank of Marin, Ghilotti Construction Company and Marin Healthcare District. Major sponsors are Ghilotti Bros. Inc.,George Petersen Insurance Agency, Marin Independent Journal and Newmark Knight Frank.
Impact Marin Conference
Wednesday, March 27, 7:30-10 a.m.
Embassy Suites by Hilton hotel, 101 McInnis Parkway, San Rafael, CA 94903
Price: $75 per person or $775 for a table of 10
Register by March 25: nbbj.news/im19