Welcome to this week’s edition of This Week in Pensions! This is the news you need to know in the fight for a secure retirement. 

Before you dive into our top stories from this week, check out stories of public employees helping their communities.

Here are the top stories from this week: 

Spending plenty, but not wisely, on schools by the Denver Gazette Editorial Board. On Tuesday, the Editorial Board of the Denver Gazette published a piece on public education spending in Colorado. Unfortunately, the editorial contains inaccuracies about the state’s Public Employees’ Retirement Association (PERA). The editorial relies on misleading research from the Common Sense Institute to falsely claim that spending on PERA somehow threatens public spending on education. The National Conference on Public Employee Retirement Systems (NCPERS) has proven this to be false, revealing that pension contributions do not crowd out spending on public education in every state of the country, including in Colorado. 

NCPERS has also shared that if public pensions disappeared, economic activity and tax revenues would be threatened. In 2016, “public pensions contributed $1.3 trillion to the national economy and $277.6 billion to state and local revenues,” illustrating their importance in economically supporting communities. 

9 Mind-Blowing Statistics Showing How Bad America’s Retirement Crisis Is by Deb Hipp. In an article for Debt.com, Hipp shares a few facts about the direness of America’s retirement security crisis. Hipp pointed out the reality that too many workers lack substantial retirement savings, as nearly one in five baby boomers have less than $5,000 stockpiled for retirement. Hipp cites another barrier in that private-sector workers do not have widespread access to employer-sponsored retirement plans. According to a 2018 study from the National Institute on Retirement Security, 49% of private-sector employees lacked access to a retirement plan through their employer, which is a critical way for workers to prepare for retirement. Finally, a significant amount of workers will not be able to afford to retire, as “around 46% of Americans plan to work past age 65.” The most commonly noted reason workers continue working into their retirement age is that they do not have “enough savings for a comfortable retirement.” While America continues to undergo a retirement security crisis, defined-benefit pension plans offer economic stability our retired public employees can count on in their golden years. 

Be sure to check back next week for the latest news in the fight for a secure retirement!