Pensions

The U.S. does not have a pension crisis and although there may be some areas where we can consolidate government services and save taxpayers money. These items are the main reasons for the “pensions crisis” (1) Politicians playing games with pensions and taxpayer money (2) For-profit health insurance (3) Using outdated, arbitrary laws like appraisal caps and revenue caps that have corporate loopholes (4) Tax-Increment Financing (5) No Individual Income Tax on earnings over $500,000 (6) Moody’s [for-profit] evaluations of pension liabilities and their greed to turn them into 401k’s (7) 2001 and 2008 Recessions (8) Lack of medicaid expansion

We do not support changing defined-benefit pensions to 401k because (1) Transitioning from defined-benefit to 401k is very expensive for taxpayers (2) Many communities and small business owners nationwide are dependent on retirees and their pensions for economic development. (3) Changing defined benefit pensions to 401k would require increasing public employee pay to match the private sector, this does not solve city budgets.

Solutions: 

  • Close the billions of dollars in sales tax loopholes




WSJ – Pensions Drop Annual Targets After Financial Crisis

Texas Pension Review Board

Putting [Houston] Pensions In Perspective

The Impact of Moody’s Proposed Changes in Analyzing Government Pension Data

The Plot Against Pensions

EPI – Will Switching Government Workers to Account-type Plans Save Taxpayers Money?

CPPP – Who Pays Taxes in Texas?

Retirement Plan Choices for Public Employees and Employers

FORBES – Why Defined-Benefit Plans Are Safer Investments for State Governments and Workers

FORBES – Pension Plans Beat 401(k) Savers Silly — Here’s Why

Dispatch – Defined-benefit pensions are better on cost, return

Why 401(k)s Shouldn’t Replace Pensions

Boston Globe – Massachusetts public pensions are stingiest in the country

Saving Public Defined Benefit Plans

Towers Watson – Defined Benefit Plans Outperform Defined Contribution Plans Again

Houston Chronicle – City suit against firefighter pension is a waste

Rolling Stone – All across America, Wall Street is grabbing money meant for public workers

Houston Chronicle – City pension representatives: ‘The sky is not falling’

Moody’s Accused of ‘Manipulating’ Pension Data

Susan Combs Throws Cold Water on Texas Public Pensions “Crisis”

Houston Firefighters Pension Fund Among The Strongest In The Nation

A Change in Calculation on Unfunded Liabilities, or Change of Heart?

Reuters – Moody’s flawed estimate on public pension liabilities

Houston Chronicle – Lump – sum HFD retirement pay strains city budget

Be very cautious about making pension changes

Financial Security Scorecard: A State-by-State Analysis of Economic Pressures Facing Future Retirees

Pension Spending Supports 6.2 Million Jobs, $943 Billion in Economic Input

CPPP – Employees Retirement System and Teacher Retirement System

Info graphic: The Real Reason You Have So Much Debt (It’s Not Crazy Spending)

“Don’t Owe. Won’t Pay.” Everything You’ve Been Told About Debt Is Wrong

Chicago Business – Here’s one public pension that survived the 2008 crisis

Telegraph – Ten countries with the world’s best pension systems

2011 Agreement Between the Houston Police Officers’ Pension System and the City of Houston

Philadelphia vs. Detroit – Pension Funding Isn’t The Whole Story

Detroit Free Press – Analysis shows Detroit pension funds in better shape than Orr says

Detroit’s Pension Is Actually Well-Funded, So What’s All the Fuss?

The real size of Detroit’s pension funding gap

Business Insider – MAPS: Here’s Where State Pension Systems Are In The Most Trouble

Robert Reich – Detroit, and the Bankruptcy of America’s Social Contract

Demos – The Detroit Bankruptcy

Daily Kos – The other Detroit pension fraud

Detroit Free Press – How Detroit came to betray its retirees

Detroit Free Press – Susan Tompor: Don’t blame pensioners for Detroit’s fiscal crisis

CFA Institute – Public Pension Funding Ratios Still Tumbling (Digest Summary)

Pensions & Investments Online – Detroit creditor plan includes ‘significant cuts’ to pension benefits

Think Progress – Meet The Hedge Fund Wiz Kid Who’s Shrinking America’s Pensions

Reuters – MuniLand In Detroit, were Orr’s pension estimates in ‘good faith’?

Alternet – The Real Story Behind the Detroit Pensions Fight and What it Means to America’s Future

QZ – What’s the deal with Detroit’s mysteriously trebling pension obligations?

Market Watch – Detroit is pension reform’s whipping boy

Benefits Pro – Other cities have larger underfunded pension plans than Detroit

Morningstar Evaluates Fiscal Health of 25 City Pension Plans; Finds Washington, D.C. the Strongest-Funded City Pension Plan and Chicago the Weakest

How Are Pensions Protected State-by-State?

Alaska Dispatch News – Here’s who got Alaska into this public employee retirement mess

Juneau Empire – Gov. signs pension changes into law

Truth Out – Public Pension Reform Is Without Legal and Moral Justification

New York Times – Wall Street Fees Wipe Out $2.5 Billion in New York City Pension Gains

Big box tax dodgers? Municipalities want to curb “dark store” property tax challenges

Wisconsin Supreme Court rules Milwaukee can’t require workers to live in city

Bloomberg – Venture Capital Is Worst-Performing Asset for Calpers

Pension and Investments – Texas appeals court reaffirms operation of Houston Firefighters pension fund is constitutional

Pew – Despite Risks, State and Local Governments Turn to Pension Obligation Bonds

Houston Firefighters posts 12% fiscal-year return