Saturday, October 1, 2011 – 1:30 p.m.

San Bernardino County’s pension fund, in a step in the right direction, appears headed towards abandoning a half-baked plan to manage the money of other jurisdictions and terminate the consultant and lobbyist involved in helping conjure up the idea to line their pockets.

On Thursday, a revamped Board of Trustees for the San Bernardino County Employees Retirement Association (SBCERA) will consider staff recommendations to dissolve Pacific Public Partners (PPP) and terminate the contracts of Orange County-based Delta Partners LLC and Sacramento-based lobbying firm Platinum Advisors.

The proposals appear on the SBCERA website public agenda under action items 19 and 20.

The idea for the creation of Pacific Public Partners was to market the investment management savvy of SBCERA to other public agencies without placing liability on the pension fund assets.

The only problem? SBCERA has been struggling to recover from heavy investment losses to its own investment portfolio, damage to its image following missteps over executive compensation and a turnover in its board.

In other words PPP was an idea to nowhere except to place money in the pockets of the people behind the scheme.

David Ellis is the owner of Delta Partners LLC. Ellis primarily operates as a political operative and has close ties to current San Bernardino County District Attorney Mike Ramos and former Treasurer-Tax Collector Dick Larsen.

How Ellis developed skills in marketing investment management services is a lingering question here.

The lead on the Platinum Advisors contract is former republican Assemblyman Brett J. Granlund. Grandlund is a lobbyist employee of Platinum and enjoys the same political ties and cover as Ellis.

Platinum helped push through state legislation to allow for the creation of PPP.

Over the past year the SBCERA board and management has turned over sufficiently enough to sever many of the political ties that has hurt the fund and allowed for sweetheart deals such as PPP.

It’s believed the no-bid contracts for both Delta Partners and Platinum Advisors cost the pension fund hundreds of thousands of dollars.

It’ll be interesting to see if federal authorities currently looking into San Bernardino County government will look here as well.

A safe assumption would be yes.