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Government Pensions: Out of Control in Your Area?

Providence, R.I. workers' wages and benefits have become "the Pac-Man of our budget, consuming everything in sight," and must be cut. His budget-trimming proposals, including calls to privatize some jobs, have brought angry city workers into the streets in protest, and celebrity protester Al Sharpton to agitate for their cause.

While the national media has focused on state budget face-offs between government unions and governors such as Wisconsin's Scott Walker, municipal officials like Mr. DeStefano are engaged in their own budget warfare. Wages and benefits account for 30% of state general fund expenditures, according to data from the National Governors Association. But U.S. Census surveys show that in the typical town or school district, employee pay and benefits can consume from 70% to 80% of the budget.

 

Costa Mesa, Calif. (population 110,000) made news earlier this year when it sent layoff notices to 43% of its employees. In 10 years, the city's annual pension bill increased to $15 million from $5 million and now consumes 16% of the city's $93 million budget. In nearby Anaheim, pensions already account for 22% of its $252 million budget.

San Jose's pension costs for police and firefighters have quadrupled in a past decade. Without reform, the city estimates that its yearly pension costs, $63 million in 2000, will swell to $650 million in 2015.

Chicago- unfunded public pension fund liabilities are nearly eight times annual city tax revenues (estimated by Joshua Rauh of Northwestern University and Robert Novy-Marx of the University of Rochester at $44 billion)

New York City's annual pension contributions were $1.5 billion (6% of city revenues) in 2002. They've exploded to an estimated $8.4 billion (18% of city revenues) in 2012.

Unfunded Pensions by State

Cities Face $1B in UNfunded Pensions

Philadelphia May Be the First to Run out of Pension Funds

Dire outcomes predicted for municipal pension systems

Answer Question
 
grlygrlz2

Asked by grlygrlz2 at 12:27 PM on Jun. 27, 2011 in Politics & Current Events

Level 39 (106,530 Credits)
Answers (15)
  • It is all across the country. The total unfunded amount is over 3 trillion.
    Carpy

    Answer by Carpy at 2:54 PM on Jun. 27, 2011

  • Exacty Carpy. You would think that 'some' would wake up and realize the enormous problem...
    grlygrlz2

    Comment by grlygrlz2 (original poster) at 3:52 PM on Jun. 27, 2011

  • You would think, but the ones on here are to busy showing how FUCKING stupid they are in the Current Events and Hot Topics group. Browsing though that group, I am just astounded by the level of stupid that exists.
    Carpy

    Answer by Carpy at 4:47 PM on Jun. 27, 2011

  • LOL Carpy... I am not big on CM groups... CM is lacking in the groups mgt/format category... If that group is really how you say~ I guess I would consider myself lucky to not have endured that group...
    grlygrlz2

    Comment by grlygrlz2 (original poster) at 6:15 PM on Jun. 27, 2011

  • Trust me grly, it is. One girl stated Boby Kennedy was not given a chance as president because he was shot at his inauguration ball

    Carpy

    Answer by Carpy at 8:17 PM on Jun. 27, 2011

  • Trust me grly, it is. One girl stated Boby Kennedy was not given a chance as president because he was shot at his inauguration ball

    No way! OMG.....
    grlygrlz2

    Comment by grlygrlz2 (original poster) at 8:18 PM on Jun. 27, 2011

  • OMG..... Well...if you worked for the Fire Department, for example, and retired, wouldn't you expect a pension? Especially since your whole career was based on risking your life for others? Same for any job that promises a pension. Is it fair to say : "Oops, sorry, guess you don't get that pension after all..." after 40 years or so of hard work for the city. There is no justification for objecting to money spentfor PENSIONS! They could take funds from other areas ...maybe from the salaries of the rich guys at the top who mostly delegate and sit in bars with others , pretending to be "important" members of city governments.Something has ti be done and pensions need to be guaranteed.

    minnesotanice

    Answer by minnesotanice at 9:07 PM on Jun. 27, 2011

  • Well...if you worked for the Fire Department, for example, and retired, wouldn't you expect a pension? Especially since your whole career was based on risking your life for others?

    Ummmmmm, if 50% of the tax revenue from Providence, R.I. (for example) is used to pay pensions~Do YOU really think the rich beauracrats make up the remaining? Seriously? The point~ to win votes, over the years, politicians have made promises that cannot realistice be funded.. Now, they need to scale back and what is happening? Unions are crying foul? WTF is that about? Ohh and ask the GM/Delphi salaried employees who have yet to see their pension after the Government restructure. They PAID into a pension and aren't even getting what they PAID into..Yet the union workers received FULL pensions. Politics. Votes. Who REALLY pays?
    grlygrlz2

    Comment by grlygrlz2 (original poster) at 9:20 PM on Jun. 27, 2011

  • Unions do not/ did not unilaterally determine those benefit contracts. Government officials negotiated with those leaders and agreed to those final contracts. WHY was the math not done prior to finalizing those agreements? WHY wasn't the answer "NO" ? 

    Sisteract

    Answer by Sisteract at 10:14 PM on Jun. 27, 2011

  • Unions do not/ did not unilaterally determine those benefit contracts. Government officials negotiated with those leaders and agreed to those final contracts. WHY was the math not done prior to finalizing those agreements? WHY wasn't the answer "NO" ?


    Answer by Sisteract

    Collusion, maybe? (probably...)
    agentwanda

    Answer by agentwanda at 10:36 PM on Jun. 27, 2011

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