Orange County Chief Executive Tom Mauk set off a trip wire Tuesday during a debate on county supervisors’ pensions by mentioning that executives had gotten a bad rap recently in terms of their salaries.

He pointed the finger specifically at Nick Berardino, who leads the Orange County Employees Association, accusing him of characterizing management pensions and perks as overly generous.

Berardino, who was in the audience, immediately challenged Mauk to a debate.

Berardino asked supervisors to do the research comparing the growth in salaries and benefits between front line workers and executives.

“Given what’s happened in the city of Bell, we should have this as a public discussion,” Berardino said.

Policy debates are part of Voice of OC’s mission. Is this the kind of debate you’d like to see? Email me at with your thoughts.


Join the conversation: In lieu of comments, we encourage readers to engage with us across a variety of mediums. Join our Facebook discussion. Message us via our website or staff page. Send us a secure tip. Share your thoughts in a community opinion piece.