Actuarial Outpost
 
Go Back   Actuarial Outpost > Actuarial Discussion Forum > Pension - Social Security
FlashChat Actuarial Discussion Preliminary Exams CAS/SOA Exams Cyberchat Around the World Suggestions

Browse Open Actuarial Jobs

Life  Health  Casualty  Pension  Entry Level  All Jobs  Salaries


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
  #121  
Old 01-25-2019, 05:33 PM
campbell's Avatar
campbell campbell is offline
Mary Pat Campbell
SOA AAA
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: NY
Studying for duolingo and coursera
Favorite beer: Murphy's Irish Stout
Posts: 89,058
Blog Entries: 6
Default

OHIO

https://perspective.opers.org/index....ns-big-impact/

Quote:
Pensions’ big impact
Study shows annual benefits supported 7.5 million U.S. jobs in 2016


Spoiler:
Jan. 24, 2019 – Think of all the things a steady, secure retirement income from a defined benefit pension affords. A place to live. Utilities. Food. Transportation. Insurance. Clothing. Contributions to nonprofit organizations. Get-togethers with family and friends. Maybe a vacation or two. The list goes on.

A reliable pension not only supports self-sufficiency in retirement after a lifetime of work. It also creates a ripple effect of direct, indirect and induced economic impacts on the federal, state and local economies.

Since 2009, the National Institute on Retirement Security has quantified the economic impact of pension payments in the United States and in each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia. By estimating the employment, output, value added and tax impacts of pension benefit expenditures at the national and state levels, the analyses continually show how important expenditures made with retiree pension benefits are to the national, state and local economies.

Pensionomics 2018: Measuring the Economic Impact of Defined Benefit Pension Expenditures, the fifth iteration of the analysis released earlier this month, found that economic gains attributable to both public and private pensions continue to be substantial. Nationwide, retiree spending of pension benefits in 2016 generated $1.2 trillion in total economic output, supporting some 7.5 million jobs across the United States. Pension spending also contributed $202.6 billion to federal, state and local government funds through taxes paid on retirees’ pension benefits and their spending.

In 2016, $578 billion in pension benefits were paid to 26.9 million retired Americans, including $294.7 billion paid to 10.7 million retired employees of state and local government and their beneficiaries (typically surviving spouses).

Expenditures made out of those payments collectively supported 7.5 million American jobs that paid nearly $386.7 billion, $1.2 trillion in total economic output nationwide, $685 billion in gross domestic product, and $202.6 billion in federal, state, and local tax revenue. The largest employment impacts occurred in the real estate, food services, health care and retail trade sectors.

Defined benefit pension expenditures have large multiplier effects. Each dollar paid out in pension benefits supported $2.13 in total economic output nationally. Moreover, each taxpayer dollar contributed to state and local pensions supported $8.48 in total output nationally.

State-level study results found that 469,649 residents of Ohio received $15 billion in pension benefits from state and local pension plans in 2016. Expenditures from those benefits supported 144,658 jobs in the state that paid $6.3 billion in wages and salaries. Ohio’s pensions also supported $20.7 billion in total economic impact and $3.7 billion in federal, state and local tax revenues.

Each dollar paid out in pension benefits in Ohio furthered $1.38 in total economic activity in the state. Each dollar contributed by Ohio taxpayers to these plans boosted $6.12 in total economic activity in the state. More details of Ohio-specific findings are available here.

OPERS paid $5.6 billion in pension benefits to more than 208,000 retirees and their beneficiaries in 2016. Because approximately 90 percent of OPERS retirees remain in Ohio, more than $5 billion of those pension payments supported the state and local economies. In 2017, OPERS paid $5.8 billion in pension benefits, with almost $5.3 billion remaining in Ohio.


__________________
It's STUMP

LinkedIn Profile
Reply With Quote
  #122  
Old 01-27-2019, 09:30 AM
campbell's Avatar
campbell campbell is offline
Mary Pat Campbell
SOA AAA
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: NY
Studying for duolingo and coursera
Favorite beer: Murphy's Irish Stout
Posts: 89,058
Blog Entries: 6
Default

ALABAMA

https://www.tuscaloosanews.com/news/...s-pension-fund
Quote:
Tuscaloosa County transfers $3M to employees’ pension fund

Spoiler:
The Tuscaloosa County Commission has approved the transfer of $3 million to the county employees’ pension fund, which is managed by the Retirement System of Alabama.

The County Commission suspended the rules on Wednesday to vote to go ahead and transfer the funds to the Retirement Systems of Alabama. The transfer, in addition to the annual employee contributions and county matching funds, is part of an effort by the county to reduce the unfunded liability in the county’s employment retirement fund. The shortfall between the cash on hand and the obligations for employee pensions is not unique to the county; other public entities with pension or retirement funds face similar challenges.

“This will start to whittle away at that deficit,” Commissioner Stan Acker said.

As of the end of the last fiscal year, the fund was about 60 percent funded with a $41.5 million unfunded liability. The commission hopes to make additional contributions annually to help close the gap, Acker said.

The $3 million contribution is a one-time amount and represents allocations from the previous two budgets. The county allocated $1 million during in the current budget and $2 million in the previous year’s budget for the contribution, Chief Financial Officer Bill Lamb said.

The county chose to move ahead with the transfer because of incoming revenues from property taxes mean funds are on hand to make the planned deposit, Lamb said.

“We want to send the money and get it started working,” Acker said.

Acker and Commissioner Mark Nelson said the funds would earn interest as part of the RSA investment compared to holding the money locally.

Acker and Nelson said the goal is to have the retirement fund for county employees funded at about 80-85 percent.


“I think people will feel very comfortable that there are adequate resources available,” Acker said of the 85 percent funding goal.


__________________
It's STUMP

LinkedIn Profile
Reply With Quote
  #123  
Old 01-27-2019, 09:33 AM
campbell's Avatar
campbell campbell is offline
Mary Pat Campbell
SOA AAA
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: NY
Studying for duolingo and coursera
Favorite beer: Murphy's Irish Stout
Posts: 89,058
Blog Entries: 6
Default

KANSAS

https://www.whig.com/article/20190118/AP/301189741

Quote:
Key part of Kansas governor's budget plan appears doomed

Spoiler:
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A key part of Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly's proposed budget dealing with pensions appears doomed, creating potential trouble for her efforts to boost spending on public schools and expand the state's Medicaid health insurance program without raising taxes.

Opposition hardened swiftly Friday to a proposal from the new Democratic governor to cut the next 17 years' worth of annual payments to the still-underfunded pension system for teachers and government workers. Kelly outlined the measure Thursday, along with the other details of her proposed $18.4 billion spending blueprint for the budget year that begins in July.

The move would free up $145 million during the next budget year, enough to cover the annual costs to the state projected by Kelly's administration for her plans to increase education funding and expand Medicaid to cover another 150,000 low-income Kansans. The move also allows Kelly to finance other initiatives while maintaining health cash reserves.

But the bipartisan Kansas Public Employees Retirement System's Board of Trustees condemned the pension proposal Friday and voted unanimously to declare its opposition in writing to legislators. Republicans in the GOP-dominated Legislature were quick to criticize the proposal Thursday, including prominent moderates whose support would be crucial for Kelly.

"This looks to me like a terrible idea," said Ernie Claudel, a retired teacher from Olathe who serves on the KPERS board.

Legislators have wrestled with public pension costs for decades, and the KPERS system remains less than 70 percent funded, with a long-term funding gap still projected at $8.9 billion. A 2012 law committed the state to aggressive increases in annual payments to close the gap by 2034, allowing payments to drop steeply after that.

But Kelly's Republican predecessors and legislators have struggled to keep up with the promises and have regularly shorted payments to plug budget holes. Kelly proposes to refinance the remaining debt over 30 years, closing the gap in 2049 — 15 years later than planned.

The move would reduce the next budget year's payment by 22 percent. Budget Director Larry Campbell told lawmakers that the annual payments would become more manageable.

"It's about long-term fiscal stability," Kelly spokeswoman Ashley All said Friday. "Without it, the state will see its required payments balloon in the coming years which could be devastating."

Legislators balked in 2017 when then-Republican Gov. Sam Brownback proposed a plan to give the state an extra 10 years — until 2044 — to close the pension funding gap.

Before becoming governor, Kelly was a state senator who helped draft the 2012 pension law and was a key player in budget debates. She has been a strong critic of Brownback's fiscal policies for years and was critical of his pension proposals in 2017.

The Senate's top Republicans were quick to cite Kelly's criticism from 2017 in attacking her pension proposal. All said Brownback's plan contained multiple provisions that made them not "equivalent" to Kelly's proposal.

"It should also be noted, no retiree benefits will be impacted," All added.

The critics of Kelly's plan include Rep. Steven Johnson, a moderate Assaria Republican visible in past pension debates and Senate budget committee Chairwoman Carolyn McGinn, a moderate Sedgwick Republican.

KPERS trustees said Friday that adopting Kelly's plan would undo progress the state has made in stabilizing its public pension system.

"Basically, you're just starting over," Claudel said.

The pension system's staff produced a report Friday showing that Kelly's proposal would increase the long-term costs of closing the funding gap by 55 percent. It said the annual payments necessary to eliminate the gap by 2034 total $13.5 billion, compared with nearly $21 billion under Kelly's plan — a difference of $7.4 billion.

For years, state officials have treated 80 percent funding as giving the pension system a "safe" status. With the current promised annual payments, the pension system becomes 80 percent funded in 2026, while under Kelly's plan, it doesn't happen until 2038.

"It would keep the system at a lower-funded ratio for a longer period of time, which just makes the system more vulnerable," Jarod Waltner, KPERS planning and research officer, told the trustees.


__________________
It's STUMP

LinkedIn Profile
Reply With Quote
  #124  
Old 01-27-2019, 09:35 AM
campbell's Avatar
campbell campbell is offline
Mary Pat Campbell
SOA AAA
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: NY
Studying for duolingo and coursera
Favorite beer: Murphy's Irish Stout
Posts: 89,058
Blog Entries: 6
Default

NEW MEXICO

https://www.abqjournal.com/1270711/l...-pensions.html
Quote:
Legislature, governor have to act now to save state pensions

Spoiler:
There are three major revisions the current Legislature and governor must make if they are going to save the ERB and PERA retirement plans from running completely out of assets. Without those assets, currently over $20 billion, the plans will only have contributions to pay their benefits, and retirees will take a 50-60 percent haircut, i.e. reduction.

Sound scary? If you want to really be scared, read the latest Comprehensive Annual Financial Report on page 43 for the ERB plan on their website. It states the plan’s assets will only last until 2053. But that’s using assumptions that have no relation to reality or what has actually occurred with investment returns, salary increases, etc. Based on actual history over the last 20 years, the assets will be gone in less than 15 years. Billions of dollars in NEW taxes will be required to fulfill these retirement obligations unless revisions are made NOW!

Here they are:

1) The Cost of Living Adjustment must be suspended until the plans are 120 percent funded. Payouts after 120 percent can be made as long as the plan stays 120 percent funded. Why 120 percent? The plans are only 60-65 percent funded now. The unfunded portion must be eliminated, and a cushion established for bad years vis a vis the investment return.

2) The Annual Required Contribution for these plans as calculated by the plan’s actuaries MUST be made every year. Both PERA and ERB have failed to make their ARC for many years – would a mortgage ever be paid off if you only made 80 percent of the monthly payment? Of course not. You can’t pay your retirement obligations either! Your plan will go bankrupt or have to be bailed out by raising taxes.

ADVERTISEMENTSKIP


3) The average annual investment return for the past 20 years is 6.4 percent for the ERB plan. Yet the trustees have used rates as high as 8 percent. They have come down some, but going forward the Trustees cannot be allowed to use rates and assumptions that cause the plan’s financial condition to be misrepresented. Payroll growth, wage increases and investment return assumptions must be limited to what has actually occurred over the past 20 years. Using 30 years is not valid because the plan assets were invested totally differently beyond the 20-year mark. If the Annual Required Contribution cannot be met with realistic assumptions described above, then benefit changes for new employees must be made.

Finally, the ERB and PERA retirement plans have to be revised to be secure for the retirees – current and future. If the Legislature and governor fail to act NOW, you can thank them for the billions of dollars in new taxes we will all have to pay for their negligence.


__________________
It's STUMP

LinkedIn Profile
Reply With Quote
  #125  
Old 01-27-2019, 09:37 AM
campbell's Avatar
campbell campbell is offline
Mary Pat Campbell
SOA AAA
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: NY
Studying for duolingo and coursera
Favorite beer: Murphy's Irish Stout
Posts: 89,058
Blog Entries: 6
Default

http://njtoday.net/2019/01/21/politi...pension-plans/

Quote:
Politicians wreck public pension plans
A Stanford study indicates politicians make poor investment decisions because they’re overly influenced by campaign contributions and political considerations.


Spoiler:
At first glance, it might seem like a smart idea to have politicians serve on the boards of public employee pension funds.

After all, according to a recent Pew Charitable Trusts analysis, these organizations hold $3.8 trillion in assets and are responsible for the retirement security of 19 million current and former government workers.

Who is better suited to handle and be trusted with that lofty responsibility than elected officials? Not only are they accountable to voters, but they also possess influence and some degree of financial expertise that they can use to guide the funds into high-performing investments.

That’s the theory, at least. But in practice, as Stanford Graduate School of Business professor Joshua D. Rauh explains, politicians tend to do a bad job of picking winners compared with other types of trustees, such as rank-and-file members and financial professionals chosen as public representatives.

In fact, “the more state officials that serve on the board, the worse the performance of the private equity investments made by the pension fund,” says Rauh.

That disconcerting insight emerges from a paper recently published in the Journal of Finance by Rauh and colleagues Aleksandar Andonov of University of Amsterdam and Yael V. Hochberg of Rice University.

The trio of researchers gathered data from thousands of investments made from 1990 to 2011 by 212 public pension funds. The pension systems invested in private investment vehicles with an average size of $2.2 billion.

The researchers focused on higher-risk “alternative” investments — private equity, venture capital, real estate, distressed-debt funds, and the like — on which pension funds increasingly place their bets.

They also analyzed the makeup of the pension funds’ boards and found that 25% of the members were ex officio — that is, entitled to seats at the table because they also held government offices such as state treasurer or controller. Another 8% were state officials, such as members of state legislatures, who had been appointed to the boards.

Part of the dilemma, Rauh notes, is that over the past decade, the nation’s public pension funds have become overly reliant on relatively precarious alternative investments, which now make up 25% of their holdings. “Ra

ther than fund benefits in a way that would give a very high likelihood or certainty to having enough money on hand when it comes time to pay these pensions, they take a much riskier approach,” says Rauh. “They set aside a lot less money than they need, and then they invest the money very aggressively, hoping that the risk will pay off.”

The researchers discovered that investment boards with a higher proportion of political representation have a measurably worse internal rate of return (IRR), the standard metric for the profitability of private equity investments. A 10% increase in the proportion of politicians on a board correlates to a 0.7% decrease in net IRR.

Politicians on public pension fund boards had a more negative effect on investment performance than representatives elected by their fellow rank-and-file pension plan participants.

When Rauh and his colleagues studied the backgrounds of board members, they discovered that the plan participant representatives’ shortcomings generally could be explained by lack of financial education and background.

But the politicians, who did even worse, didn’t have that excuse. “They’ve generally got good financial experience, and they’re more likely to have an MBA,” Rauh notes.

The problem, the researchers found, is that state officials don’t just rely on their training and experience to make investment decisions. Officials, they found, also tend to be influenced by political considerations, such as the possibility of increasing their support among voters by investing in local businesses. Such choices may be more politically beneficial than they are profitable.

“They’re making economically targeted investments, the ones meant to stimulate economic growth in the state or to support the local economy and local employment,” Rauh explains. As a result, a 10% increase in state ex officio board members is associated with a 1.4% increase in allocation to local investments. These investments in local real estate and venture capital deliver lower returns.

Rauh and his colleagues also tracked officials’ campaign contributions from the financial industry and found that the flow of donations tainted investment decisions. Each additional $100,000 in contributions to board members of a $10 billion public employee pension fund results in a 0.28% decrease in return and a 1.2% lower multiple of invested capital.

“We definitely find a link between political contribution to the politicians and bad performance,” Rauh says.

But while politicians aren’t good at making investment decisions, they do better at selecting public representatives for boards, the researchers found.

“Before this study, people might have assumed there wouldn’t be anything better about a politician picking a board member, because they would just appoint their friends or somebody who would misappropriate the assets,” Rauh says. “But empirically, that’s not what happens. They’re typically appointing an outside director with financial expertise, somebody who’s not conflicted.” Those independent professionals tend to make the best investment decisions.

Rauh says that the researchers’ findings point to potential peril looming for public pension funds — and for taxpayers, who may have to endure cuts in services or tax hikes to cover the funds’ shortfalls and pay for retirement benefits for police, firefighters, and other public employees.

“It’s time to change the way we pick these boards,” Rauh says. “That’s particularly true in light of how pension systems around the U.S. are not in great shape from a financial perspective. It’s not as if they have a lot of slack here.”


__________________
It's STUMP

LinkedIn Profile
Reply With Quote
  #126  
Old 01-27-2019, 04:56 PM
campbell's Avatar
campbell campbell is offline
Mary Pat Campbell
SOA AAA
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: NY
Studying for duolingo and coursera
Favorite beer: Murphy's Irish Stout
Posts: 89,058
Blog Entries: 6
Default

NEW JERSEY

https://burypensions.wordpress.com/2...ension-reform/

Quote:

Talking of NJ Pension Reform
Spoiler:
In an interview recorded on November 13, 2018, and broadcast this weekend on State of Affairs with NJEA shill Steve Adubato, State Senator Robert W. Singer (R) sees bipartisan support for reforming New Jersey’s public benefit structure with only the need for more talk:
.


.
No there is no need to talk and yes the unions control our governor and a majority of politicians.

It may just be my circle but among the issues that got on a legislative agenda without any talk from me or anybody I know:

subsidizing solar panels,
smoking marijuana for fun,
having a $15/hour minimum wage,
betting on sports, and
building stupid stuff.
These got pushed or passed because the people who donate to campaigns here wanted them. Nobody is giving Robert Singer, Stephen Sweeney, or any other New Jersey politician money to cut public pensions or health benefits.


__________________
It's STUMP

LinkedIn Profile
Reply With Quote
  #127  
Old 01-27-2019, 04:58 PM
campbell's Avatar
campbell campbell is offline
Mary Pat Campbell
SOA AAA
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: NY
Studying for duolingo and coursera
Favorite beer: Murphy's Irish Stout
Posts: 89,058
Blog Entries: 6
Default

ILLINOIS

https://www.northernpublicradio.org/...y-numbers-show

Quote:
Pension Buyout Participation Rate Higher Than Expected, Early Numbers Show

Spoiler:
A program designed to curb Illinois’ pension debt is now underway. Early numbers show more Illinois state employees than expected are choosing to take a pension buyout from the state.

Listen Listening... Listen to a summary of the story.
Public employees hired before 2011--and who have worked for at least eight years--get an annual three percent boost when they collect their pensions. That adds to what the retirees bring in, but also the cost of Illinois’ pension debt.

So, state lawmakers introduced the option as part of last year’s budget. State retirees can now choose to swap the three percent annual adjustment on their pensions for a lump sum payment--70 percent of what they would have gotten.

They also get to keep their base pension and 1.5 percent adjustment each year.

Tim Blair is the Executive Secretary for Illinois’ State Employees Retirement System. He says the deal isn’t a panacea.

“I don’t think that any type of program is going to be a quick fix for what we’re dealing with," he said. "But I think it is a nice step in the right direction.”

Since it launched in December, at least 200 new retirees took the deal, more than expected. Blair says their buyouts have ranged between $80 and $100,000.

The program is designed to save the state about $380 million per year.

Neighboring Missouri introduced a similar program for their state employees in 2017. Blair says about 22 percent of retirees there took the buyout, which formed the basis of savings estimates for buyouts in Illinois, which are more generous by comparison. Missouri offers a 60 percent match while Illinois is offering 70 percent.

Blair himself says the ground on which Illinois pensions stands is shaky.

“I’m very optimistic that we’ll always have what we need to pay our retirees, but just from my standpoint, the future is uncertain. We’re all day to day.”

Illinois has among the largest unfunded pension liability in the country.


https://burypensions.wordpress.com/2...n-cola-buyout/
Quote:
Illinois’ Pension COLA Buyout

Spoiler:
When New Jersey wanted to cut the value of public retiree benefits they simply eliminated cost-of-living-adjustments (COLA) on pensions trusting that the courts would go along (as they did). Apparently Illinois can’t make these arbitrary cuts so they need a plan. Last year they came with one:

For retiring Tier I members, they have an option to have their automatic annual increases calculated at 1.5 percent in exchange for an accelerated pension benefit payment equal to 70 percent of what that difference would be in the life of the value of their pension benefit.

Buyout participation rates have been higher than expected:

Since it launched in December, at least 200 new retirees took the deal, more than expected. [Executive Secretary for Illinois’ State Employees Retirement System Tim] Blair says their buyouts have ranged between $80 and $100,000. The program is designed to save the state about $380 million per year. Neighboring Missouri introduced a similar program for their state employees in 2017. Blair says about 22 percent of retirees there took the buyout, which formed the basis of savings estimates for buyouts in Illinois, which are more generous by comparison. Missouri offers a 60 percent match while Illinois is offering 70 percent.

Looking at a numerical example there is a good reason public retirees like the program.


Assume a retiree getting $10,000 annually in 2018.
For 2019 a 3% COLA would bring that payment to $10,300.
With a 1.5% COLA it would be $10,150 plus the value of 70% of $150 payable for life.
Assuming an annuity factor of 10 that would come to a lump sum of $1,050 meaning that someone taking the buyout would get $11,200 in 2019 instead of $10,300.
Over the long term there will likely be savings (depending on the actuarial assumptions used) but with the current funded status of the Illinois plan (and these fixes that cost more up front) it is unlikely that the Illinois Retirement System has a long term.

Incidentally, using my example, for someone to get a $100,000 buyout their annual pension would need to be about $670,000. Anyone know which coach that is?


__________________
It's STUMP

LinkedIn Profile
Reply With Quote
  #128  
Old 01-27-2019, 05:13 PM
campbell's Avatar
campbell campbell is offline
Mary Pat Campbell
SOA AAA
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: NY
Studying for duolingo and coursera
Favorite beer: Murphy's Irish Stout
Posts: 89,058
Blog Entries: 6
Default

PHOENIX, ARIZONA

https://ctmirror.org/2019/01/16/lawm...haring-debate/

Quote:
How should Phoenix pay off $4B in pension debt? Voters may get a say

Spoiler:
Phoenix voters may soon change how the city manages its growing multibillion-dollar pension debt.

A political committee called Responsible Budgets — backed by Councilman Sal DiCiccio — wants voters to change how Phoenix calculates its pension debt and require the city to spend almost all excess general fund revenue to pay down the debt.

The group submitted almost 50,000 signatures to the Phoenix City Clerk's Office on Tuesday. It needs 20,510 valid signatures to qualify for the August ballot. The clerk has until March 6 to verify the signatures.

Phoenix pension debt tops $4 billion
Phoenix has racked up more than $4 billion in pension debt — money it will someday owe to its retirees.

Phoenix City Hall in downtown Phoenix.
Phoenix City Hall in downtown Phoenix. (Photo: The Republic)

Public pension systems across the United States were decimated during the Great Recession, and cities now have to make up for the losses experienced a decade ago.

Phoenix police and fire employees belong to the Arizona Public Safety Personnel Retirement System, which in 2017 was named the third-worst-performing government trust fund in the nation, as measured over a 10-year period that ended in 2015.

Most other city employees belong to the City of Phoenix Employees' Retirement System. In 2015, Phoenix voters approved a few reforms to the system that are expected to save the city more than $1 billion over the next 25 years, Budget and Research Director Jeff Barton said.


What would initiative do?
Phoenix has tried some creative and some controversial methods to manage its pension debt in the past, but the city still spends hundreds of millions of dollars each year paying down its debt.

Last year, the city spent $376 million. This year, it plans to spend $426 million.

Some say that's not enough — they want the city to forgo what they deem as unnecessary spending now and catch up on its debt sooner.

That's what this initiative would accomplish, according to proponents.

The initiative has four main elements:

Requires annual assessments of pension debt based on a 10-year average rate of return on investments of pension systems.
If the city has not funded at least 90 percent of its pension liability, it can only increase its budget to compensate for population growth or inflation. In other words, if there's still pension debt, there can be no new city spending. Only public safety services are exempted from this limitation.
Requires the city to spend any additional funding on pension debt.
Ends pensions for City Council members.
In a statement on his Facebook page, DiCiccio said the city "must pay every single dime we owe to our current employees and retirees."

"I am afraid that if we continue to lie to ourselves and the public about what our past due pension obligations really amount to, the day may come when future leaders in the city have no choice but to either shortchange our retirees, or be forced to make drastic cuts to key services like street maintenance, public transit, police and fire," he said.

"Proper planning can eliminate those risks, but to do so we have to know the truth about our obligations, and we have to know now.”


__________________
It's STUMP

LinkedIn Profile
Reply With Quote
  #129  
Old 01-27-2019, 05:15 PM
campbell's Avatar
campbell campbell is offline
Mary Pat Campbell
SOA AAA
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: NY
Studying for duolingo and coursera
Favorite beer: Murphy's Irish Stout
Posts: 89,058
Blog Entries: 6
Default

CONNECTICUT

https://ctmirror.org/2019/01/16/lawm...haring-debate/

Quote:
Lawmakers renew teacher pension cost-sharing debate
Connecticut must catch up on billions of dollars in missed contributions

Spoiler:
Former Gov. Dannel P. Malloy first raised the idea of sharing the fastest-growing cost in the state budget with cities and towns.

But while Malloy failed to win legislative support before he left office one week ago, the debate over whether to bill communities for a share of municipal teacher pension costs is not over.

Legislative leaders revisited the issue Wednesday at the Connecticut Council of Small Towns’ annual meeting.

And while Republican leaders remain steadfastly opposed to cost-sharing, two Democratic leaders were open to shifting some expenses onto local budgets — albeit at more modest levels than Malloy originally suggested.

“It seems we’ve gotten to the point in state government where we’re always taking more money out of people’s pockets,” House Minority Leader Themis Klarides, R-Derby, told the nearly 250 municipal leaders gathered at the Aqua Turf Club in Southington. “This is one of those danger signs that’s flashing with a red light.”

After more than seven decades of inadequate contributions by legislatures and governors serving between 1939 and 2010, the pension fund for municipal teachers holds enough assets to cover just 58 percent of its long-term liabilities.

The ratio would be considerably worse had the 2007 legislature and then-Gov. M. Jodi Rell not decided to borrow $2 billion to bolster the pension fund’s assets.

Still, because Connecticut must catch up on billions of dollars in missed contributions — as well as the potential investment earnings it forfeited by not saving — the annual contribution to the fund is projected to skyrocket.

The latest actuarial valuation calls for the annual contribution — about $1.1 billion now in a $19 billion General Fund — to approach $3 billion by the early 2030s.

But many argue that number, though imposing, is extremely conservative.

For one thing, it’s contingent on pension investments achieving an average return of 8 percent over the next decade-and-a-half.

A 2015 study by the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College projected that if Connecticut achieves a more realistic 5.5 percent return on pension investments, the annual contribution could exceed $6.2 billion by 2032.


Senate Minority Leader Len Fasano, R-North Haven, and House Minority Leader Themis Klarides, R-Derby

Malloy first proposed in 2017 that communities bear one-third of the cost, starting at about $400 million per year.

Municipal leaders fought back vociferously, arguing the state dramatically boosted teacher pension costs through its fiscal irresponsibility, and therefore should bear the cost of fixing it.

“We didn’t break it, why should we buy it?” Coventry Town Manager John Elsesser, former COST president of the Connecticut Council of Small Towns tweeted when Malloy first proposed cost-sharing.

But Sen. Cathy Osten, D-Sprague, co-chairwoman of the legislature’s Appropriations Committee, said the former governor’s concerns are reasonable.

Strengthen Our State
Pension costs are consuming an ever-increasing portion of state finances, and a more modest cost-sharing plan could be explored.

“We have a huge problem with teachers’ pensions … and we have to deal with this issue going forward,” she said.

Osten, who also is first selectwoman of Sprague, noted that while municipal teachers receive a pension, they do not receive Social Security. Were they eligible, cities and towns would have to contribute toward this benefit.

Though she didn’t offer a specific cost estimate, Osten said the legislature could consider requiring communities to contribute an amount to the teachers’ pension equal to the Social Security contribution — but only for new teachers.

Osten also echoed another concern raised by Malloy, that the current teacher pension system favors wealthy communities over poorer ones.

For an example, Osten cited Greenwich — one of Connecticut’s wealthiest municipalities — and New Britain, which is one of its poorest.

Both have similar populations and school enrollment totals, but Connecticut spent $24 million more last year to cover pension costs for retired Greenwich teachers than for those from New Britain.

“We have a huge problem with teachers’ pensions … and we have to deal with this issue going forward.”
State Sen. Cathy Osten, D-Sprague
In simple terms, Greenwich can afford to pay much higher salaries than New Britain can, yet it gets more help from the state on a per capita basis to provide pensions for its retired teachers.

Leading Communications
House Majority Leader Matt Ritter, D-Hartford, also is open to exploring a modest cost-share.

Ritter suggested the legislature build a new limit around the median teacher salary level. Communities that choose to pay teachers above that median level would make a contribution toward the state’s pension costs.

The majority leader also said this only should apply to new teachers hired after the law is passed, and the legislature should not time this requirement to take effect before 2024, so communities could plan for the expense.

“I think that would be fair,” he said. “That’s a five-year lookout.”

But Southbury First Selectman Jeff Manville, a Republican, said Ritter’s suggestion would be unfair unless legislators do more to reform the binding arbitration process that often determines teachers’ pay.

“The binding arbitration [system] puts us in a position where you do have to raise teachers’ salaries,” he said.

Binding arbitration does consider a community’s ability to pay raises, and Manville said towns that have controlled expenses and kept their tax rates low are punished by this process.

Senate Minority Leader Len Fasano, R-North Haven, who also opposed a local cost-share for teacher pension contributions, agreed.

“If you’re a successful town, you get penalized,” Fasano said, warning local leaders not to expect new changes that favor towns in binding arbitration now that Democrats have expanded their majorities in the General Assembly. “There’s a tremendous amount of pushback from certain folks in that building that I don’t think has gone away and, one can argue, has increased.”


Ridgefield First Selectman Rudy Marconi, president of the Connecticut Council of Small Towns

Fasano also said he fears that state government, which created the pension crisis, would gradually increase the municipalities’ portion of the pension bill if a cost-sharing arrangement were adopted.

“Pretty soon you’re going to wake up and find you have 50 percent of the responsibility,” Fasano said. “We never promise something and say ‘that’s it.’ We always go back.”

Ridgefield First Selectman Rudy Marconi, a Democrat and president of the Council of Small Towns, said rather than shift pension costs onto towns, the legislature should work more closely with communities to find ways to reduce government costs. “Make us a partner and give us an opportunity to be heard,” he said.

The council represents 110 Connecticut towns with populations of 30,000 or less.


__________________
It's STUMP

LinkedIn Profile
Reply With Quote
  #130  
Old 01-27-2019, 05:20 PM
campbell's Avatar
campbell campbell is offline
Mary Pat Campbell
SOA AAA
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: NY
Studying for duolingo and coursera
Favorite beer: Murphy's Irish Stout
Posts: 89,058
Blog Entries: 6
Default

KENTUCKY

https://www.courier-journal.com/stor...on/2601830002/

Quote:
Pension talks need consultant 'without preconceived notions,' McGarvey says

Spoiler:
FRANKFORT — The minority leader of the Kentucky Senate says he'll ask that a consultant "without preconceived notions" be brought in to help advise the legislature's new Public Pension Working Group.

Sen. Morgan McGarvey, a Louisville Democrat, said he plans to send the leaders of the General Assembly's Republican majority a letter recommending consultants who have experience with public pensions "but do not have a well-established ideological agenda."

McGarvey's concern is over the revelation earlier this week that the new 14-member group assigned with crafting a new pension reform plan is being advised by the libertarian Reason Foundation.

McGarvey and leaders of the Jefferson County Teachers Association and the advocacy group Kentucky Government Retirees complained Wednesday that the California-based Reason Foundation has argued for reform approaches that they think are counterproductive — such as moving public employees from traditional pensions into 401(k)-like plans.

"We need to get people in here without preconceived notions to take a fresh look at Kentucky's pensions," McGarvey said. He said he's gathering information on other consultants and plans to make a recommendation soon to leaders of the legislature's Republican majorities.

Read more: Racism, jobs and pensions: 5 things to know about Fischer's 2019 plans

Senate President Robert Stivers, R-Manchester, said he is open to any suggestions McGarvey might send him. "We want to look at options," Stivers said. "... This is not an exclusive thing."


Stivers told the 14-member working group at the very end of its first meeting Tuesday that two representatives of Reason Foundation would be consulting the group — at no cost to the state.

Stivers said he brought in Reason Foundation "because they had worked on this and they had told me at several prior meetings that there is more than one way to get to a solution other than what was proposed in prior bills."

He said that because of the foundation's knowledge of Kentucky's situation and experience in helping other states, "I asked them to come back."

More headlines: Former justice: Beware of Bevin's rants on the pension reform ruling

At its two meetings so far, the group has reviewed details of Kentucky's eight pension plans that together report nearly $43 billion in debts. Leaders have asked the group to try to recommend a reform bill in time to pass in the current legislative session but left open the possibility that the group may need more time and make a recommendation later this year for consideration in the 2020 legislative session.

Stivers said Thursday he believes there is a 50-50 chance the group will complete its work in time for its recommendation to be considered in the current session, which adjourns March 29.


__________________
It's STUMP

LinkedIn Profile
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 09:36 AM.


Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
*PLEASE NOTE: Posts are not checked for accuracy, and do not
represent the views of the Actuarial Outpost or its sponsors.
Page generated in 0.19166 seconds with 9 queries