Welcome to the latest edition of This Week in Pensions! As we do most weeks, we have gathered the best stories about pensions and retirement security from the previous week. This is the news you need to know in the fight for a secure retirement.
Here are this week’s top stories:
- Lawmakers are ill-advised to close off teacher pensions — it will be costly by Pam Taylor: retired Michigan public school teacher Taylor warns about efforts by the state legislature to close the pension plan for public school employees in Michigan. A new analysis from the house fiscal agency confirmed Taylor’s warning. It found that the proposed legislation would cost billions of dollars over the timeframe covered by the bill.
- Editorial: Don’t tinker with teacher pensions by Detroit Free Press Editorial Board: sticking with Michigan, the editorial board of the Detroit Free Press also spoke out against efforts to close the public school employees pension system this week. They cautioned against following the wishes of the “big-spending DeVos family”, concluding: “ideologically driven, DeVos-funded Lansing Republicans need to stop messing around with our schools.”
- It Seems to Me: Officers warrant security by Katy Krumm: a correctional officer in Wisconsin calls on state legislators there to reject proposed changes to the Wisconsin Retirement System. As we’ve written about before, WRS is a model pension system. It is fully funded and provides a reliable and secure retirement to hundreds of thousands of Wisconsinites. The changes proposed by State Sen. Stroebel are unnecessary and would be harmful to the long-term health of the pension fund.
- Pensions in the Parishes 2017 by Louisiana Budget Project: a new report this week from the Louisiana Budget Project examines the economic impact of Louisiana’s public pensions in every parish in the state. The report finds that pension benefits account for nearly 2 percent of all personal income in the state, making pensions a key economic driver, especially in rural areas.
- ‘Dismantling’ public pensions could cost economy $3.3 trillion by Sheila Dang: a new study by NCPERS finds that closing defined benefit pensions and forcing workers into 401(k)-style plans could increase income inequality and slow economic growth nationwide. “Opponents, having little or no understanding of how public pensions are funded, promote misleading information about rate-of-return assumptions and huge unfunded liabilities to convince policymakers to dismantle public pensions.”
Last week we reported on President Trump’s attacks on the pensions of federal employees in his 2018 budget. His proposed budget was released this week and the attacks are just as bad as we thought. We’re fighting back- will you join us? Sign our petition calling on President Trump to stop the attacks on the retirement security of federal employees.
We’ll be off next week, but be sure to check back in the weeks ahead for the latest news in the fight for a secure retirement!