State pension reform envisioned

February 10, 2012

Public employees’ pensions will be reformed by the legislature before the next state budget is adopted, Senate President Pro Tempore Darrell Steinberg predicted today. [Sacramento Bee]

“We are committed to getting pension reform done,” said the Upper House leader, downplaying the impact of a failed effort by a nonprofit group to place a reform initiative on the ballot this year.

California Pension Reform, an advocacy group, ceased its signature-gathering efforts earlier this week.

Steinberg said lawmakers’ proposals will incorporate, but not mirror, suggestions made by Gov. Jerry Brown. Some of those include raising the retirement age of public pension earners to 67 for most new employees, and creating a hybrid system with Social Security and a modified 401(k). The Senate boss said any plan that will be forthcoming will not adversely affect low and middle-income earners.


17 Comments

  1. willie says:

    One more mention, hope it doesn’t make anyone sick.
    Some of us old retired guys on pensions still have mortage payments, bills to pay and family including relatives to support!
    Don’t envy the 99%, nor assume we don’t know what many people are going through, its not new to us!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 4

    • Jack L says:

      Remember that CA retirees spend most of their money and use the healthcare benefits in our state and that helps keep many business going. So it’s not like cutting the pensions is some kind of fix all. There is a lot more to our state monetary issues than pensions. Don’t think that overnight either party can cut existing pensions in half or even less. The main focus will be on new hires and some existing loopholes. Save your energy for over the long haul and many election cycles..

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 4

      • willie says:

        Jack L
        Save your energy for over the long haul and many election cycles..

        I am having a hell of time trying to keep up paying the credit card expenses and bills for the family expense (inflation) and educational needs (hikes and inflation), if any of you out there can keep low or out of debt or even lowering your debts, your to be commended.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  2. willie says:

    As for the Social Security system, I believe it can be resolved and intact in the long term, if we take the short term then Congress will have to follow California’s hybrid.

    I have always viewed the heart of the OWS struggle and grim prospect of their future steming from a denial of opportunity to get affordable education without having to be in hock for 10 years of debt and the opportunity to get their piece of the pie in life.

    Election November 2012

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

    • The Gimlet Eye says:

      Sorry, willie, but ponzi schemes don’t have happy endings.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1

      • willie says:

        No disagreement.
        No matter what cookie jar it is, It will always have lots of hands in it!

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    • Maxfusion says:

      Willie, did you actually say “OWS struggle”? Please tell me it was a tongue in cheek comment. The only thing this gang of unwashed miscreants “struggles” for is talking Daddy out of his ATM card. Struggle, indeed!! The SS issue is easily solved. Stop the drug addict support scam called SSI. Problem solved.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  3. willie says:

    FYI

    I have a CalPERs Retirement, a Social Security Retirement, after I retired from civil service I had an option to work part-time in a former “private” industry where I need only 4 more years to retire with pension and benefits but I elected to go into a partnership business with colleagues.
    EVERTHING from CalPers, Social Security, and if I had gotten a third private business pension ARE FULLY TAXABLE thus a percentage goes back into the federal and state general funds. Furthermore none of the medical or dental benefits nor pension contribution after 1988 were ever “so-called free” NOT even after retirement!
    Don’t envy anyone in the 99% group!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 8

  4. Bob Cob says:

    Fire departments, police departments and corrections only have so many positions should we just make up positions for the old guys and gals to work in. You would be spending more tax payers money.

    I work construction and I invested money and will retire before 60. Isn’t that what PERS does?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

    • racket says:

      Bob: I don’t think the departments should provide “make work” positions to accomodate employees who can no longer perform the basic functions of the department.

      Good on you for looking out for your retirement. I think the difference between you and PERS is that if you invest poorly and/or live a long time, you run the risk of running out of money before you die. PERS pays out without regard to market conditions or how much the recipient has “used” compared to how much they have paid in. (Same problem with SS). Before you charge that I am advocating throwing ancient fire fighters on the street, let me say that what I want EVERYONE to pay into their retirement exactly what they will get out. As it stands now, only you and I are fully-funding our retirements.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 3

  5. Bob Cob says:

    I can’t wait to see the 60+ year old CHP officer or CDC officer and I’m sure the state firefighters will be able to do their job safely also. :/

    Does anyone think that maybe we will end paying more for people on workers comp?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 8

    • racket says:

      I have heard that argument in other contexts.

      Seems to me the FD and PD ought to have performance standards — just like the real world. The fire fighters, as they age, need to move to a position that requires less of whatever they are less able to give.

      Carpenters who turn 60 don’t get a “bye” on swinging a hammer just because they’re old. The forward-thinking ones have found something else to do to that better matches their abilities.

      It’s a real concern across all the trades about what to do once age catches up.

      Why should public safety personnel be any different than the rest of us?

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 17 Thumb down 0

      • The Gimlet Eye says:

        “Carpenters who turn 60 don’t get a “bye” on swinging a hammer just because they’re old.”

        That’s because they work in the private sector. When you work in the public sector, they get “special privileges.”

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 2

    • Jack L says:

      ‘Safety’ positions will probably never be more than 57 years until they retire. There are way too many injuries after that age and would cost more than it would be worth in savings. Those in non safety positions will have to work longer and many already do. Check your local municipalities concerning non safety positions and you will see how long they have to work until they can draw full retirement..

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  6. easymoney says:

    When it says accomplished instead of envisioned I will believe it…
    As it stands it will never happen because of the unions….

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 4

  7. racket says:

    Love the last paragraph:

    “The Senate boss said it is another tax upon the wealthy, because we outnumber them.”

    Oh, wait, he didn’t quite say that, what he said was that it “will not adversely affect low and middle-income earners.” It was me using the process of elimination to figure out whom he tends to adversely affect while keeping pensions fat.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 4

  8. willie says:

    Although inflation and fear/distrust are hunkering people down, I think one year after the election (regardless of who is president) is good “timing’ to invest or re-invest in 401, 457 etc. It is difficult to get ahead or make up for losses without some careful investment.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2

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