Welcome to the latest edition of This Week in Pensions! 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.
Governor Lamont Says Today’s Historic $2.8 Billion Special Pension Payment Is One of the Strongest Fiscal Stability Moves Connecticut Has Made in a Generation. This week, Connecticut made a historic payment toward its unfunded liabilities. The $2.8 billion payment into the pension system ($1.9 billion to the State Employees Retirement Fund and $900 million to the Teachers’ Retirement Fund), triggered by a transfer from Connecticut’s operating surplus into its “rainy day fund”, is the largest in state history. This payment, in addition to the regularly scheduled contributions the state makes to the fund, “is what Connecticut has needed to do for many years and brings the state on firmer financial ground than we’ve seen in a generation,” Governor Ned Lamont said. “For the sake of our future and the future of our children, our administration will continue implementing policies that put Connecticut on the right path to becoming financially stable for the long-term.” According to the Office of Policy and Management (OPM), Connecticut taxpayers will see $6 billion in savings over the next 25 years due to this extra payment. State laws dictate that extra funds must go toward pension liabilities if the budget reserve fund reaches an excess threshold of 15% This is the third year in a row, and the third time since the statute was enacted, that this has happened.
Committee looks to retirees as a way to fill teaching positions by Eileen O’Grady. This week, a legislative committee dedicated to addressing New Hampshire’s teacher shortages began their study into finding solutions. The Committee to Study New Hampshire Teacher Shortages and Recruitment is looking toward retired teachers and students currently enrolled in Education programs as part of the solution. “We’d like to understand better the capability of retired teachers, educators, to come back into the profession to help districts fill the vacancies that currently exist,” said committee chair, Senator Jay Kahn. “There are examples of educators who would like to do that, and in fact are doing that out of state. What kind of limitations currently exist to their coming back into the profession?” While New Hampshire teachers didn’t leave at the same rates that teachers in other states did during the Great Resignation, their starting salaries lag behind nearby Massachusetts, but above nearby Maine. AFT-NH president Deb Howes said, “New Hampshire teachers make about 19% less than their college-educated, non-teaching counterparts.” Aside from fair pay and other benefits, the promise of a pension can attract new teachers into the education profession.
Be sure to check back in next Friday for the latest news in the fight for a secure retirement!