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:
- I would talk about checking groceries, too by John Brostad: an Iowa voter criticizes Governor Kim Reynolds over her stance on public pensions. Despite the strength of Iowa’s public pension system, Reynolds has hinted at changes, such as moving new employees into a 401(k)-style defined contribution plan. “IPERS has worked well for 65 years and is one of the best pension systems in the country,” Brostad writes.
- Retirements spike amid uncertainty by The State Journal Editorial Board: public employees in Kentucky are retiring in record numbers due to uncertainty regarding their public pensions. As we’ve discussed many times, Kentucky’s pensions have been under attack by Gov. Bevin and other anti-pension politicians for more than a year now. After months of promises to address pension issues, Republican legislators rushed through a bill in a single day. That legislation is now tied up in the courts, prolonging the uncertainty for Kentucky’s public employees.
- How the Janus Ruling Might Doom Public Pensions Next by Jennifer Mueller: a writer for Slate warns that the recent Supreme Court ruling in Janus that struck down fair share fees for public sector unions could threaten public pensions as well. If the reasoning behind the majority’s ruling in Janus is taken to its logical extreme, the Court could hold that public employees could not be forced to contribute to their pensions. This could create a serious threat to the stability of public pension systems. This is all hypothetical at this point, but it does hint at possible future problems arising from the Court’s decision.
- Jerry Brown to Supreme Court: Hurry up and hear my pension law case by Adam Ashton: California Governor Jerry Brown is pushing the state supreme court to hear a case regarding the “California Rule” before he leaves office later this year. If Gov. Brown wins the case and the California Rule is weakened, that could leave public pensions open to attack, not just in California, but in other states as well.
Be sure to check back next week for the latest news in the fight for a secure retirement!