Wirepoints Special Report

Ted Dabrowski and John Klingner at Wirepoints analyzed pension data as compiled by Pew Charitable Trusts from 2003 through 2015 to come up with a report asserting that “too little money into pensions hasn’t been the issue. Instead, it’s the dramatic growth in pension benefits promised by politicians that’s been bankrupting Illinois.”

Unfortunately for the authors they were unable to claim that Illinois had raised benefits more than any other state or had negative asset growth, primarily because of the existence of New Jersey.

My notes:

  • These figures are drawn from official valuation reports where interest rates for valuing liabilities vary and for later years may even use much lower rates (resulting in higher liability values) as suggested by GASB 67 & 68.
  • The asset amounts look like the ‘smoothed’ overstated values. New Jersey is unlikely to see $81 billion in assets ever again.
  • New Jersey got rid of retiree cost-of-living adjustments in 2011 yet still tops the list.

 

33 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Analyst on February 6, 2018 at 10:32 am

    We need to see the raw annual expected benefit payments . Only then can a true analysis of liabilities occur .

    The growth in assets is almost misleading . Growth is a function of investment returns , contributions , and any withdrawals needed to pay benefits . …we need more data and transparency and not just the data that supports various talking points .

    Any financial planner would request this data from a client and make the same observation before making recommendations , so why do these so-called experts get away with such shoddy analysis ?

    Reply

  2. Posted by Mike on February 7, 2018 at 4:38 am

    I agree, the analysis was lazy and superficial. Why did they bother?

    Reply

    • Posted by Analyst on February 7, 2018 at 10:49 am

      Thanks . Sadly , this gets into the public realm and people adopt its conclusions . There needs to be accountability and someone ( not sure who) needs to call out shoddy research , this makes it harder for food analysis to get heard .

      Once again , thanks John for having a forum to share this info .

      Reply

    • Posted by geo8rge on February 7, 2018 at 12:21 pm

      lazy and superficial.

      At least they are doing something. They are also working for free. A bigger problem is the asset-liability numbers are so far away from each other there is no point in doing a precise analysis. The problem is really political not arithmetical at this point.

      Reply

      • Posted by Tough Love on February 7, 2018 at 12:30 pm

        Indeed it is “political”. When the 1-st, 2-nd, and 3-rd priorities of current Elected Officials are ALL to get re-elected, going against the desires of their Union emplyess even when patently unreasonable is VERY difficult.

        Few have the character (or money) to do so.

        Reply

      • Posted by Analyst on February 8, 2018 at 1:42 am

        Hmm so you think doing something for free that is wrong and gives the wrong impression is better than doing nothing ? …I hope you don’t mean that .

        I read the whole report , there is some good information in it , but there is also damaging inaccuracies .

        Reply

  3. Posted by Stephen Douglas on February 7, 2018 at 12:33 pm

    John, I’ve read through this report quickly, but don’t see exactly what they define as “pension benefits”
    I began work in California in 1972, and the benefit in force there had been the same since 1968 (2%@62). The infamous SB400 “increased” it to 2%55. My pension increase was about 3% of FAS. (For both formulas, the max multiplier is 2.43% at 63 or older.)

    Their graph shows that California has had a 6.6% annual average growth from 2003-2015.

    Does “accrued liabilities” in that chart include unfunded liabilities?

    Reply

    • They don’t mean the benefit formula going up but rather the accrued liabilities going up – which is natural as people get closer to retirement and more people come into the system.

      I agree it is a not a rigorous calculation and there are a lot of adjustments to be made (primarily for different interest rates over the years) to get an honest number but at this stage the report serves a purpose in putting together the official history of the numbers and someone with a background to see the flaws (as many of the readers here now have) can make their adjustments.

      Reply

  4. Posted by Stephen Douglas on February 7, 2018 at 1:57 pm

    Thank you John…

    Quoting Dr. Lee: “There’s Something Wrong Here”…

    I will look again, but I don’t see a clear definition of “pension benefits” here.

    According to Andrew Biggs (AEI, 2014), for Illinois State workers, the combined DB, DC, and Social Security pension compensation is 27% of salary, just slightly above average for all states. (New York state is 36%)

    “Total fringe benefits” for Illinois workers is 75% of wages. (84% for New York state)

    “Total compensation advantage” (wages plus benefits) compared to private sector workers is 26% in Illinois. 34% in New York.

    So why, according to Pew, in 2015, was the funded ratio in Illinois 40%?
    And in New York at the same time, funded ratio was………98%?

    Mary Pat Campbell:
    “DON’T PAY THE BILLS, THE DEBT GETS LARGER”

    Reply

    • Posted by Tough Love on February 7, 2018 at 2:53 pm

      WRONG ………… NY’s Taxpayers have just been suckered to a MUCH greater extent in being FORCED to pay for the ludicrously excessive Public Sector pensions & benefit promises.

      Being FORCED to pay doesn’t make the necessary, just, fair to taxpayers, or affordable.

      Reply

  5. Still don’t know who to believe. Wirepoints or Mary Pat Campbell.

    ” This is starting to get into philosophy. It is very clear that at least 47% of the unfunded liability is due to deliberate choices (underfunding + benefit increases).

    I would argue, from a philsophical viewpoint, that all of the shortfall is due to underfunding.”

    Wirepoints intuitively looks wrong, but I can’t put my finger on it. Maybe Mary Pat will follow up soon.

    http://stump.marypat.org/article/852/geeking-out-and-illinois-pensions-fixing-a-graph-and-assigning-blame-for-underfundedness

    Reply

    • Posted by Analyst on February 8, 2018 at 1:53 am

      Wire point is wrong in their basic assumption that underfunding is not a major contributor . Their second error is that they seem to look at the growth of the pension plan assets. Any financial planner will tell you that the growth of the pension fund is a result of contribution + investment returns – withdrawals and expenses . That’s why some of the best performing states are ones with plans that don’t have high withdrawals and are making their contributions .
      I am deciphering Mary Campbell’s charts , but she seems thorough in her approach . Two elements that are often overlooked are what the opportunity costs from underfunding are ( how much would the fund have earned if the full amount was invested ) as well as what the impact of their investment decisions ( I.e if they performed like the median fund how much would they have earned ) . This is standard variance accounting and performance measurement , but is rarely applied . We are compiling data on both of these to provide a more accurate assessment of various public funds . We hope to share on this blog since it has
      Mostly thoughtful readers and writers .
      One final point , if Illinois had paid their full ARC and had earned 8% per year , would not still be in south trouble ? Would we be blaming the benefits side of the equation ?

      Reply

      • Posted by Tough Love on February 8, 2018 at 11:59 am

        Analyst,

        While underfunding is a very important element of Public Sector pension discussions, it leaves the readers with an incomplete picture without including a discussion of the generosity of Public Sector pensions and benefits and how, when added to their wages, giving Total Compensation, the resultant Public Sector Total Compensation compares to that of Private Sector workers in similar jobs, or in jobs requiring similar levels of experience, education, skills, and knowledge.

        This is important because in MANY cases, the ROOT CAUSE of the pension mess traces back to grossly excessive pension/benefit “generosity”, and the lack of available revenue to fully fund Public Sector pensions is not the CAUSE of the pension mess but a CONSEQUENCE of that real underlying ROOT CAUSE ….. excessive “generosity”.

        Example: In NJ, many local Police Officers have a BASE PAY of about $135K annually after only 5 years of service, And on top of that, a pension that will after only 25 years of service pay 65% of final wages (with unreduced pensions often beginning at age 55) and until recently COLA-increased, plus free or heavily subsidized retiree healthcare. While they have an inkling that these benefit packages are quite costly, a VERY small percentage of NJ Taxpayers understand just how great that cost really is.

        I don’t know if you have ever tried to do so, but if you did (using the 25-years, age 55, and 65% pension example above), you would find that NJ’s Police Officer pensions have a “value upon retirement” (looking at that as the lump sum cost to buy the promised income stream) just about 4 TIMES that of the typical pension (for the few who still get them) of a Private Sector worker who retires at the SAME age, with the SAME wages, and the SAME years of service…….. and that 4 times rises to 5 to 6 times if COLAs are reinstated in NJ.

        Some commentators like to point out that greater Public Sector pension & benefits are the trade-off for lower wages. While we could argue the extend of how true that is today (and whether one overshoots the other) I purposely chose NJ Police as an example because it seems clear that with BASE wages of $135K annually after just 5 years of service, they are MUCH more likely to be making MORE than that of similarly educated, experienced, skilled and knowledgeable Private Sector workers than less.

        I started this comment stating ……… “While underfunding is a very important element of Public Sector pension discussions, it leaves the readers with an incomplete picture without including a discussion of the generosity of Public Sector pensions and benefits”………..

        I have found in my own work, that testing extremes often helps to clarify underlying causes, so consider the following while keeping in mind that the Public Sector Unions/workers continue to blame “underfunding” as the sole cause or certainly the primary element of the pension mess in which many States and Cities find themselves today, So consider this ……….

        If the current NJ Police pension formula & provisions were in total 2x or 3x as generous as they are today, clearly these pensions would be in a far greater mess than now, but I can assure you that the Unions/workers would STILL be saying the SAME THING, that “underfunding” is the CAUSE of the problem. Really ???

        Now go the other way………..

        If (all while make MORE in wages than their Private Sector counterparts) CURRENT Police pensions are NOW 4 times greater in value upon retirement than those of comparably situated Private Sector workers, is the real ROOT CAUSE of the pension mess “underfunding” or grossly excessive pension “generosity” ?

        Reply

        • Posted by Analyst on February 8, 2018 at 2:28 pm

          Thanks for thoughtful response . If we can agree that underfunding and lost investment earnings as well as investment performance are important part of the discussion ( and not unimportant ) , I( and I am glad that you accepted that ) then I am happy to agree that benefits and liability growth are equally important . One tire on a car is no more important than another ( in general ) , one leg of a table is no more important than another . Let’s get the annual data of projected benefits and contributions , do an analysis and try to correct this challenge . Benefit reform will follow when the cold hard facts are placed in front of all parties regardless of their political orientation or current beliefs . #GET THE DATA

          Reply

          • Posted by Tough Love on February 8, 2018 at 3:04 pm

            While getting the Data is important and necessary. I believe that what you stated ………..

            “Benefit reform will follow when the cold hard facts are placed in front of all parties regardless of their political orientation or current beliefs . ”

            will be a great deal harder to come by that you think.

            There is enormous resolve among Plan participants to get “all that has been promised” ….. no matter how “excessive” (by any and every reasonable metric) and no matter what the cost or negative implication for NJ’s Taxpayers. And with our Elected Officials (including our new Governor) essentially “in-the-Union’s-pocket” REAL/SUBSTANTIVE change is going to be VERY hard to come by.

          • Posted by Tough Love on February 8, 2018 at 4:00 pm

            Follow-up……….

            When I say that the change you envision ….”will be VERY hard to come by”, witness that our Democratically-controlled (Union-beholden) Legislature:

            (1) Completely ignored (given the “dire” financial position of NJ’s Public Sector pension Plans) the well-reasoned and fair (to the unbaised observer) recommendations of the NJ Pension and Benefits Study Commission
            (2) Let the 2% Police Salary Arbitration cap expire ….one of the few things that successfully slowed the absurd increase in Police wages.
            (3) Is now on a path to enact NJ Senate Bill S5 to turn over NOT just the “management” of Police pension to their Unions, but ALSO the authority to reinstate COLAs (without meeting the 80% funding level requirement in current law) increase their own pensions, and decrease worker contributions…….. this is BEYOND idiotic (as actuary Mary Pat Campbell stated).

          • Analyst,

            ” We are compiling data on both of these to provide a more accurate assessment of various public funds .”

            First, thank you. And Second, who is “we”?

            My first, of many questions on this article was… “… I don’t see a clear definition of “pension benefits”

            The answer didn’t help much…
            “This report covers the growth in total pension benefits owed to state workers, also known as the state’s accrued liabilities. The accrued liabilities as of 2017 were $214 billion. That amount should not be confused with the state’s unfunded liability, which is the total shortfall in the state’s pension plans. The unfunded liability, at $129 billion, is the difference between what the state owes its pensioners, $214 billion, and the assets it has set aside against those obligations: $85 billion.”
            —————————————————-
            “A dramatic rise in pension benefits – not funding shortfalls – caused Illinois’ state pension crisis”

            “Promised pension benefits in 2016 were 1,000 percent higher than they were three decades ago.”

            1,000 percent?????? One thing for sure, 1,000 percent increase is not what the typical worker would receive in 2017, as opposed to 1987, although Mr. Dabrowski doesn’t do much to clarify that.

            SB400 in California is often billed as a “50% pension increase” for public workers. It wasn’t. Not even close, except for a minority of safety workers.

            In either case, if you are the average taxpayer, already convinced that public workers had a decent, or better, pension, and you see an alleged 50% increase in benefits, or “benefits a 1,000 percent higher”, what are you supposed to think?

            For a little more insight on the “underfunding” vs “overbenefit,
            http://www.chicagobusiness.com/section/pensions

          • Posted by Tough Love on February 8, 2018 at 6:16 pm

            Quoting …..

            ” if you are the average taxpayer, already convinced that public workers had a decent, or better, pension, and you see an alleged 50% increase in benefits, or “benefits a 1,000 percent higher”, what are you supposed to think?”

            The average taxpayer SHOULD BE thinking……..

            (a) How do my wages compare to those granted a Public Sector worker doing the SAME job ?

            (b) How does the “generosity” of my pension (or 401K DC Plan) compare to those granted a Public Sector worker doing the SAME job ?

            (a) How does my benefits (BOTH while active and in retirement) compare to those granted a Public Sector worker doing the SAME job ?

          • Posted by Stephen Douglas on February 8, 2018 at 9:09 pm

            Would that it were so simple. How much is an engineer worth?

            https://typesofengineeringdegrees.org/highest-paid-engineering-jobs/

            Comparing public and private compensation is just not that simple.

            All (or most) of the think tanks that do this type of research are 501(c)3 organizations. One could probably give a directed donation to both conservative and liberal think tanks, and maybe even suggest some of the details we would all like to see. And then we could argue about the results for another decade.

            They would likely come up with results similar to what we have now. I am all for the public having this information available. So far, it seems most large studies agree (and I doubt that ninety percent of the public is aware of this) that…

            A) the lower level, less educated public workers earn about the same in wages as similar private sector workers, but pensions and benefits bring their total compensation much higher.

            B) the more highly educated, professional public workers earn much less in wages, and P&B are definitely not enough to compensate for the lower salaries.

            C) between those extremes (stop me if you’ve heard this before) are a large cohort of public workers whose allegedly excessive pensions and benefits roughly compensate for lower salaries. As Goldilocks would say, they are “just right”.

            Most, or at least roughly half of private sector workers, as I understand, have neither a pension nor a 401(k). Some of those envy the public pensions, some scoff at the public pensions.

            In the meantime, there is a serious public pension crisis that needs serious that requires serious reform. Part, but not all of which may be pension reduction.

          • Posted by Tough Love on February 8, 2018 at 9:29 pm

            Stephen, How many times have you repeated the Total Public/Private Sector Compensation differentials ……. BY INCOME GROUP …… ?

            All while you know that’s misleading (or at least incomplete) BECAUSE what financially impacts taxpayer is the NET Public/Private Sector Total Compensation differential …….. FROM ALL GROUPS TAKEN TOGETHER.

            And when we show that …….. in BOTH CA an NJ (our Homes States) ……….. per the AEI study (the only study that I am aware of that gives State-specific details) we find a 23% of Pay Public Sector Total Compensation ADVANTAGE.

            Taxpayers………… how much more would YOU have for your retirement needs if YOU have an ADDITIONAL 23% of pay in every year to save and invest for your retirement … and extra $500K, and extra $1 Million, perhaps an extra $2 Million for some? Well, THAT is a good estimate of how much we (the Taxpayers) are now OVER-COMPENSATING each and every full career Public Sector worker.

          • Posted by Stephen Douglas on February 8, 2018 at 11:07 pm

             How many times ?

            Let me count the ways.

            That is the most important information to come out of Biggs study. It was hinted at, but not quantified by the other studies.

            “we (the Taxpayers) are now OVER-COMPENSATING each and every full career Public Sector worker.”

            His data, as well as the other studies, all agree that is incorrect.

            Monique Morrissey:
            “The national pattern that public-sector workers with college degrees are compensated somewhat less and those without college degrees are compensated somewhat more than their private-sector counterparts holds true for Connecticut as well. The more compressed pay structure—with top and bottom pay closer together—reflects the fact that people are drawn to public service for nonpecuniary reasons and that government employers have an interest in setting a higher floor on compensation than private-sector employers, some of whom pay poverty-level wages and pass health care and other costs onto government programs. Because public-sector workers are more likely to have college degrees, public employers—and taxpayers—are getting a bargain while ensuring a decent standard of living for less educated workers.”

            “Now go the other way………..”

          • Posted by Tough Love on February 8, 2018 at 11:22 pm

            Wrong again Stephen,

            Per the AEI study results, in CA and NJ there is an OVERALL 23% of pay Public Sector Total Compensation ADVANTAGE.

            Sure, for almost every INDIVIDUAL worker it will be different than that average percentage, but from the standpoint of the financial impact upon Taxpayers (which is what MATTERS) it is EXACTLY as I stated………. equivalent to EVERY full career Public Sector worker being over-compensated by $500K, and extra $1 Million, perhaps an extra $2 Million for some.

          • Posted by Stephen Douglas on February 9, 2018 at 12:29 pm

            But, we are talking about reform here, Mr. Love. And the compensation distribution matters.

            Andrew Biggs, “Overpaid or underpaid? A state-by-state ranking…”

            “First, and most basically, the wage penalty or premium that a state government pays is not
            uniform throughout the distribution of workers employed by the government. It is generally believed that, due to the relative compression of wages paid in government, public employment is relatively more favorable to lower-skilled employees and less favorable to high-skill workers.

            Second, the value of fringe benefits differs between high and low earners. Some fringe benefits,
            such as health coverage, have essentially the same dollar value for all employees. Others, such as pensions or paid time off, have a value that is proportional to the individual employee’s wages. Fixed-dollar benefits will favor low earners and earnings-related benefits will favor high earners.”

            Etc., etc. …

            “…more favorable to lower-skilled employees…” means, your so-called OVERALL 23% advantage is driven by this cohort. Remove enough of them from the equation and your 23% advantage disappears.

            So sayeth the spreadsheet, but…

            The spreadsheet is a tool, not a master. We can decide, for entirely non-mathematical reasons, to “ensure a decent standard of living for less educated workers.”

            Or not?

          • Posted by Tough Love on February 9, 2018 at 1:22 pm

            Quoting Stephen Douglas ………

            “But, we are talking about reform here, Mr. Love. And the compensation distribution matters.”

            And the NET impact (the differential between Public and Private Sector Total Compensation) from all workers taken TOGETHER matters more, because it is the NET impact from all workers taken together that financially impacts Taxpayers.

            We’ve batted around the (AEI Study’s) 23%-of-pay Public Sector Total Compensation ADVANTAGE in CA and NJ for quite some time. You (a CA Public Sector retiree) keep playing it down, but it’s hard NOT to envision Public Sector workers screaming bloody murder if it was the other way around, and it was the Private Sector that had that advantage. ….. and demanding immediate compensation increases to eliminate it.
            ____________________________________

            Quoting Stephen Douglas ………

            ” We can decide, for entirely non-mathematical reasons, to “ensure a decent standard of living for less educated workers.””

            It’s real easy to spend OTHER People’s money for your own benefit. Well, as Taxpayer I see no justification for paying the Public Sector workers even in the lowest skilled job more in Total Compensation (the split by pay, pensions, benefits not really being material) than what that compensation would be if doing the SAME job in the Private Sector. And if that compensation is insufficient to meet basic needs (shelter, clothing, food, healthcare, etc.) then that should be addressed by the Social Service system …… just as Private Sector workers in that situation must now do …… and NOT by artificially inflating their compensation and handing the bill top Taxpayers.

          • Quoting Mr. Love…

            “Well, as Taxpayer I see no justification for paying the Public Sector workers even in the lowest skilled job more in Total Compensation (the split by pay, pensions, benefits not really being material) than what that compensation would be if doing the SAME job in the Private Sector.”

            Well, there you go! Back on the same page. Reduce the compensation of all those public workers who now earn more than their private sector equivalents, till they are roughly equal. Your alleged 23%-of-pay ADVANTAGE is gone. It’s tautological.

            The NET impact (the differential between Public and Private Sector Total Compensation) from all workers taken TOGETHER will be by definition, an “average” private sector advantage.

            I believe we discussed this before, since we have reduced the compensation for the lower skilled workers, we could use those funds to raise the compensation of the professional, credentialed, more highly educated public worker (EQUAL). We already know that there is a group of public workers in the middle who are already “roughly equal” in compensation. (In Biggs national statistics, these would be those in jobs that typically require a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree.)

            Your mileage may vary, in New Jersey, California, Illinois, etc.

            Take away from the laborer and give to the lawyer.
            Take away from the janitor and give to the Judge.
            Take from the driver and give to the Doctor.

            (Too much?)

            I don’t see any legal, moral, or political backing for that kind of redistribution*, but if EQUAL is what you want, go for it.

            *or perhaps re-redistribution.

  6. Posted by Tough Love on February 9, 2018 at 6:08 pm

    Stephen Douglas,

    You added nothing to the discussion, You believe the Public Sector workers are “special” and deserving greater compensation than their Private Sector counterparts, and what the “THE MARKET” says that jobs should pay.

    Too bad if I feel that it’s the PRIVATE Sector where 85% of all workers are employed that sets “MARKET RATE” compensation, NOT the Public Sector where compensation is distorted by Union/Politician collusion.

    Reply

  7. Quoting Tough Love…

    “Stephen, How many times have you repeated the Total Public/Private Sector Compensation differentials ……. BY INCOME GROUP …… ?”

    This is why…

    “I see no justification for paying the Public Sector workers even in the lowest skilled job more in Total Compensation (the split by pay, pensions, benefits not really being material) than what that compensation would be if doing the SAME job in the Private Sector.”

    “Too bad if I feel that it’s the PRIVATE Sector where 85% of all workers are employed that sets “MARKET RATE” compensation, NOT the Public Sector where compensation is distorted by Union/Politician collusion.”
    ———————————————–
    You want equality, there it is. 85% of all workers that are employed set “MARKET RATE” compensation, so cut those public janitors and clerks down to the market rate. Start with those most overcompensated and work your way up till the NET impact from all workers taken TOGETHER. is zero.

    That should solve your EQUAL problem. You won’t get EQUAL by reducing the pay of those public sector workers who are already underpaid, or who are already “roughly equal”.

    Reply

    • Posted by Tough Love on February 9, 2018 at 8:04 pm

      I DON’T CARE how it’s accomplished …..

      You can get there (in CA and NJ) by decreasing everyone’s compensation by 23% of pay, or more/less by individual or group however you please ….as long as the NET IMPACT is to eliminate the 23% of pay Public Sector Total Compensation ADVANTAGE.

      Public Sector workers are NOT “special;” and deserving of a better deal ….on the Taxpayers’ Dime.

      We (the Taxpayers) have grown weary of be looked at as the “sucker” to be financially abused.

      Reply

  8. I’m pretty sure our horse is dead, we can stop beating it. I won’t magically change your mind, and you won’t change mine.

    The only reason I keep repeating this stuff, and calling your claims, is that some passing reader might take notice and, not take my word or yours, but investigate for himself.

    It’s hard to imagine any other reader getting down this far in the thread, so….

    Reply

    • Posted by Tough Love on February 9, 2018 at 8:05 pm

      YUP ……… see my above response.

      Reply

      • Posted by Anonymous on February 11, 2018 at 2:35 pm

        Once again TL, you’re wrong and using wrong data. You like to point out things to the masses but when you apply false information, everything you say becomes suspect. Chp 78 changed retirement formulas. There is no longer a 25 years at 65%. It’s 25 years at 60% and 30 years at 65%. That’s a huge huge difference. And it’s on the last 3 years average Salary. And they are capped at $15,000. And they go right into the 35% healthcare contributions……. with all that….. police and fire work at the poverty level. So If you want to be taken serious, please use facts. So tired of the copy paste responses. It’s been 5 years and I can tell exactly what you will say… verbatim.

        Reply

        • Posted by Tough Love on February 11, 2018 at 10:55 pm

          No Anonymous, your just forget (or is “ignoring” the correct word) that the 2011 changes only applied to NEW workers, and all Police who were already employer prior to the 2011 changes STILL get the 65% after 25 years.

          And a 60% pension after 25 years … meaning a 60%/25 = .024 or a per year-of-service “formula-factor” of 2.4% (vs 2.6% under the 65% after 25 years formula).

          Big whoop (it peanuts, not a “huge difference”), they’re BOTH grossly excessive when a the few lucky Private Sector workers still earning accruals in DB Plans are more likely to be getting 1.5% or less. And they’re pensions typically can’t begin without SIGNIFICANT reduction until age 65.

          __________________

          What’s …..”And they are capped at $15,000″ ???
          ___________________

          Quoting …….. “police and fire work at the poverty level. ”

          Are you freak-en nuts? Many Police in NJ now get a BASE PAY of $135+K after only 5 years of service, and with their rich pensions and benefits, their “Total Compensation” …. for the LOWEST rank Officer ……… is often $200K.

          Who in the Private Sector worth COMPARABLE education. experience, skills, and knowledge makes that after only 5 years?

          Reply

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