16 11, 2020

As public pension costs soar, some Southern California agencies turn to controversial borrowing to fill deep holes

2020-11-16T09:55:34-08:00November 16th, 2020|Categories: Pension Funding|Tags: , , , |

The little agency responsible for killing mosquitoes and rats in the Coachella Valley will see its bill for worker pensions nearly triple over just four years. Payments will also nearly triple for Cal-OPTIMA, Orange County’s health care system for low-income people, seniors and those with disabilities, as well as for the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum Commission, the folks who bring events to the historic stadium in Exposition Park. They’ll more than double for the Orange County Transportation Authority, which [...]

6 10, 2020

Controller Yee: ‘More work’ ahead for CalPERS board

2020-10-06T09:46:02-07:00October 6th, 2020|Categories: Corporate Governance|Tags: , , |

Even though CalPERS is taking steps toward fixing its governance problem, officials at the $411.5 billion pension plan say the road ahead is long. California Controller Betty T. Yee, who sits on the boards of both California Public Employees' Retirement System, Sacramento, and the second-largest U.S. public pension plan, the $262.5 billion California State Teachers' Retirement System, West Sacramento, is helping drive the changes. Her duties on both boards give Ms. Yee an unobstructed view of the culture and [...]

3 08, 2020

California Supreme Court forbids pension spiking, but upholds other retirement protections

2020-08-03T11:59:28-07:00August 3rd, 2020|Categories: Pension Funding|Tags: , |

The California Supreme Court on Thursday ruled against public employee unions that were trying to beat back part of former Gov. Jerry Brown’s pension overhaul law. The court’s ruling prohibits so-called pension spiking, a strategy in which county public workers took extra shifts, worked odd hours at higher pay or cashed out accumulated leave at the end of their careers to inflate their pensions in retirement. The Alameda County Deputy Sheriff’s Association filed a lawsuit in 2012 over Brown’s [...]

2 08, 2019

Half of California workers have no retirement savings, says UC Berkeley report

2019-08-02T16:17:32-07:00August 2nd, 2019|Categories: Retirement|Tags: , |

Many Californians may sink into downward mobility in their golden years because of a lack of retirement savings, says a new report by Berkeley’s Center for Labor Research and Education. About half of California private sector employees ages 25 to 64 don’t have dedicated retirement savings, according to a new report by Nari Rhee, director of the Retirement Security Program at the University of California, Berkeley’s Center for Labor Research and Education. The report provides a rare look at [...]

30 05, 2017

GOP Lawmaker Pushing For Pension Reform

2017-05-30T23:14:26-07:00May 30th, 2017|Categories: Pension Reform|Tags: , |

A bill would require a vote of the public anytime a government entity decides to increase pension benefits paid to workers. Republican Assemblyman Bill Brough of Southern California argues that California’s unfunded pension debt is approaching half a trillion dollars, and without big changes, governments will be forced to cut benefits, raise taxes, or slash services. […]

13 04, 2017

The last word in reform efforts?

2017-04-13T16:56:39-07:00April 13th, 2017|Categories: Pension Reform|Tags: , |

More than 20 times in the last 15 years, political leaders looking to control California’s fast-growing public pension costs have tried to put reform initiatives before the voters. None of the proposals has made it onto the ballot. Often, advocates could not raise enough money for signature gathering, advertising and other costs. Some of the efforts, however, ran into a different kind of obstacle: an official summary, written by the state attorney general, that described the initiative in terms [...]

23 08, 2016

California court opens door to changing public employee pensions

2016-08-23T21:41:17-07:00August 23rd, 2016|Categories: Pension Funding|Tags: , |

California’s perpetual debate over public employee pensions has always revolved about what’s called the “California rule” – a series of court decisions that seemingly prohibit any changes in pension benefits once they are granted. The debate has intensified in recent years as the California Public Employee Retirement System and other state and local pension systems grapple with multibillion-dollar “unfunded liabilities” for pension benefits and increase mandatory payments from governments to reduce them. […]

23 08, 2016

California set to join states offering retirement plans

2016-08-23T21:37:26-07:00August 23rd, 2016|Categories: Retirement|Tags: , |

More than half of American workers — roughly 55 million — don’t have access to a retirement savings plan on the job. While those people can open an individual retirement account with an investment company, less than 1 in 3 American households has an IRA and even then most of those people have access to an employer-sponsored plan such as a 401(k). This week California lawmakers are expected to vote on a bill that would enroll employees who are not [...]

11 02, 2015

Half of California workers are heading for retirement struggles

2015-02-11T18:54:13-08:00February 11th, 2015|Categories: Retirement|Tags: , , |

Wanda McGuire describes herself as a “people person.” She spent years working in the fashion industry, and flew around the country as a flight attendant for Continental Airlines. She also worked in what she refers to as “corporate America” — obscure law firms, property management companies and long-gone venture capital startups. She exudes an enthusiasm and upbeat energy that she confidently outlines as major job assets. “I was good at what I did,” she says. It is clear that [...]

27 01, 2015

C.A. Upholds Constitutionality of Public Employee Pension Cuts

2015-01-27T22:38:22-08:00January 27th, 2015|Categories: Pension Funding|Tags: , |

A statute reducing retirement benefits for some public employees may be applied to workers hired between the law’s effective date and the expiration of collective bargaining agreements otherwise requiring a greater benefit, the Fourth District Court of Appeal ruled yesterday. Div. One said application to those employees of the defined benefit formulas in the California Public Employees’ Pension Reform Act of 2013 does not violate the state Constitution’s contract clause. The panel also held, however, that the plain language [...]

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