Judging Depletion Date

Per a notice on the NJDPB website the FY 2019 Comprehensive Audited Financial Report is now available so the pension actuarial reports as of July 1, 2019 should not be far behind. Expect a series of blogs when they do come out but, for now, here is a look at the Judicial Retirement System (JRS) which will be the first plan to run out of money on paper. Using valuation report exhibits, without any substantial benefit cuts or cash infusions this is how it will look based on projecting historical data:

NOTES:

  1. 6/30/20 will certainly show a massive investment loss for the plan year ended
  2. I do not expect the state to make any more contributions beyond what they have put in so far until the plan gets to pay-as-you-go status some time in early 2022
  3. Administrative expenses took a jump in PY04 and have increased despite decreasing asset values

 

45 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by NJ2AZ on April 20, 2020 at 5:06 pm

    based on my recollection of past comments, consensus seems to be that JRS going bust won’t mean much because its a drop in the bucket if it becomes PAYGO.

    can’t wait to see the same expectations for TPAF and PERS

    Reply

  2. Posted by Tough Love on April 20, 2020 at 5:16 pm

    Can’t wait to see the same for the Teacher’s Plan. That’s the Plan with the BIG $$$ shortfall and 2-nd only to the small Judicial Plan in it’s very Low Funded ratio.

    When THAT Plan goes PAY-GO our Elected Officials will HAVE TO make a decision, either ADMIT that they are going to sock-it to the Taxpayers or VERY materially reduce pension accruals and active/retiree healthcare benefits.

    Reply

  3. Posted by Tough Love on April 20, 2020 at 5:19 pm

    Off Topic ……….

    Disney will this week stop paying 100,000 employees, almost half of its global workforce, as it seeks to weather the economic storm created by the coronavirus pandemic.

    WHY aren’t we doing the SAME for non-working (or phony “make-work”) Public Sector workers ?

    Reply

  4. Posted by MJ on April 20, 2020 at 5:56 pm

    TL, who knows why the non-working public sector workers are still being paid? Maybe that’s why Murhph is starting to make references to laying so many off……only the shadow knows I guess 🙂

    Reply

    • Posted by Tough Love on April 20, 2020 at 6:16 pm

      Quoting ……….

      “TL, who knows why the non-working public sector workers are still being paid? ”

      Are you kidding? Gov. Murphy’s head is so far up the NJEA’S butthole, he couldn’t find his way out with a roadmap.

      Reply

      • Posted by E on April 20, 2020 at 8:07 pm

        I agree ALL non working public employees should in fact be furloughed. Rec departments, building Dept ) school employees, library etc school employees not at the school working or teaching remotely.
        In our town I honestly don’t know if they are getting paid, using vacation time or. It getting paid. With the exception of the school employees (some are in summer mode, repairs, new flooring etc) the rest of these part and even full timers are ALL political hacks.
        Your police? Still working
        Your teachers? While not ideal, still working.
        Boro admin and boro clerk, treasurer, tax collector, etc. ALL still working. It is just that Boro hall is closed to public via in person. Phone call and email still get you an answer. You are legally required to have those positions. Council meeting are still being held virtually. Boro business still continues.
        DPW? Still working. Despite your recycling center being closed.
        Especially in these smaller suburbs, there really isn’t a lot of fluff at the municipal level. And the schools are generally excellent in our neck of the woods.
        However, I fully agree, if you are not working, (above examples) then you shouldn’t be receiving a pay check. Apply for unemployment. Like I said, political hacks one and all.
        BTW—you really think the JPS will be broke in 1/2022? With all the political hack lawyers serving on the bench? The same lawyers that are buddies with the lawyers in the legislature? Not a chance in hell.

        Reply

        • Posted by Tough Love on April 20, 2020 at 8:12 pm

          I have no doubt that retired judges will still collect their pensions ………. until/when/if the retired teachers stop getting theirs …… and THAT might really happen.

          Then, the judges payments will ALSO stop.

          Reply

  5. Posted by Eric on April 20, 2020 at 9:29 pm

    Tough Love:
    I would like to know where you purchased your crystal ball. The number one concern is not the pension “solvency”, but how long will people accept the U.S. dollar for payment.
    I was in Italy in 1992, for a short period of time, and tried purchasing a newspaper, with US currency, which was immediately thrown onto the ground by the Italian merchant. This was prior to the euro being used as a currency.
    Look how far the U.S. dollar has fallen since 1992!
    In 1973, a year after the Olympic games were hosted by Munich, when my swimming idol, Mark Spitz won 7 gold medals, I spent a season in Germany, mostly swimming, and lived like a king. I bought a new wardrobe with U.S. dollars that seemed to be merely “pocket change.” Now the German economy, based upon production, puts the U.S. economy to shame. When 70% of the U.S. economy is service driven, and people have no money, an economic depression may result regardless of how many trillions of U.S. dollars are printed by the Fed in an attempt to stabilize the system.
    How long will foreigners accept the U.S. dollar in trade?
    This is what concerns me. I invested for my own retirement, but most people cannot.
    Be thankful you seem to be intelligent enough to provide for yourself without requiring help from a bankrupt system. Others are hoping beyond all hope that the system remains intact, at least long enough for themselves, since they failed to plan accordingly.
    Eric

    Reply

    • Posted by Tough Love on April 20, 2020 at 9:57 pm

      Quoting ………….

      “The number one concern is not the pension “solvency”, but how long will people accept the U.S. dollar for payment.”

      With 40% of all Federal Gov’t purchases paid for with borrowed money ….even BEFORE COVID-19 ……….. I’ve long thought the SAME.

      America has endured as the world’s reserve currency NOT because of it’s strength, but because with all of it’s problems, other currencies are still LESS-secure options.

      But we’re sure playing with fire with this multi-$Trillion Fed Printing Press.

      In this ONE instance, Trump may be correct, when he (stupidly stated during his campaign) ……. if America gets in trouble and can’t honor it’s debt, “we’ll renegotiate”. Still thinks he’s in the Real Estate business.

      Reply

    • Posted by bpaterson on April 21, 2020 at 1:23 am

      The only way the system can self correct is thru hyper-inflation, making all our fixed dollar based debts become devalued and reasonable. Of course the quality of life for the citizens would be decimated. Germany in the 30’s got thru it, although they worked themselves into a tizzy of a war.

      Reply

  6. Posted by NJ2AZ on April 20, 2020 at 10:31 pm

    maybe NJ can ask the feds for a few billion like Illinois

    Reply

    • We should get it based on all the $$$ we’ve put into the federal coffers last couple decades. We don’t get crap back from DC. It gets sent to the God Guns Grits and Gravy crowd in America’s beacon of intelligence—the American South.

      Reply

      • I think liberalism is a disease, but Jesus H. Christ the Georgia Gov decides to shut the state down because “I only found out in the last 24 hours that the virus could be spread by someone who ain’t got no cough or don’t feel hot, golly gee”. Meanwhile the rest of the fucking world has known for months that an asymptomatic person can spread the virus. 🙄
        What is more stupid? Not knowing that fact or telling the whole country that you didn’t know that fact. As Atlanta cases soar….

        Reply

        • Posted by Tough Love on April 20, 2020 at 11:10 pm

          Yes we should ……… with a condition from the Feds that not $1 goes towards propping up Public Sector pension or benefits.

          Reply

          • Yes. You’re correct. Just continue to do as you’ve done for the past 20 or so years. Continue to find the pensions on the local level. And then have the state use the federal $$ to cover projects that would’ve sucked away pension money and then pay that too as scheduled. (For a change on the state level). Problem solved. 👍

          • Posted by Tough Love on April 21, 2020 at 12:17 am

            E, Teachers’ pensions are funded at the STATE level, and THAT’S the big one, by far.

        • Posted by Tough Love on April 21, 2020 at 12:23 am

          Quoting …………..

          “the Georgia Gov decides to shut the state down because “I only found out in the last 24 hours that the virus could be spread by someone who ain’t got no cough or don’t feel hot, golly gee””

          Laughed when I heard that. Very funny, and why they are called “hillbillies”.

          Reply

      • Posted by NJ2AZ on April 20, 2020 at 11:01 pm

        hey, that’s just the rich paying their fair share, i’m sure the NJ voters don’t mind :p

        Anyways, how much of that is NJ’s own fault for essentially devaluing the dollar within its borders? Federal tax brackets are a known quantity. Is it my fault that NJ has made it so you need $250k to live the same way i can live out here in the middle $100s?

        Also worth pointing out, to get back as much as y’all pay in, NJ would have to consume something like 10% of ALL federal discretionary spending.

        I think my overall point is (if i even have one): common currency unions have their pitfalls.

        Reply

        • Not sure we are on the same page here. I’m not talking about anything other than disaster relief money. As of now, and probably through this thing NJ and NY have gotten hit the hardest. If the feds and other states feel we don’t deserve the $$ we need. By all means, don’t give it. But then don’t give any to tornado or hurricane stricken states ever again either. Works both ways. Don’t come to NJ taxpayers and say that we gotta fix the southern half of Louisiana or the coast of Florida “cause we all in this together”.
          So true that supply and demand dictates that because of our proximity to NYC, the financial and Coronavirus capital of the world, it costs more to live here and people who work here will, on average, make more. I’ll even say, fine, help Hailey Barbour and his dumb rednecks who marry their sister in MS when disaster strikes. But help NJ out when it needs it too.
          Only fair considering we pay WAAAAAAAY more collectively than the good folks in MS.
          That hypocrite voted against Sandy relief but then had his hand out for federal dough the very next year.

          Reply

  7. Posted by Tough Love on April 21, 2020 at 12:12 am

    Off Topic ………

    “https://www.nj.com/coronavirus/2020/04/100k-nj-public-workers-could-be-partially-furloughed-under-plan-proposed-by-state-senate.html”

    Great idea, but at the end of July when the Federal $600 ends, we need to take a hard look at whether we REALLY NEED staff who for months only worker 2 days a week. Those not needed FULL-TIME should NOT come back FULL-TIME.

    Reply

    • Ok. But here in NJ, people here have a tendency, as you know, to vote to go from twice a week garbage pickup to once a week and then complain that the neighborhood stinks. Lol. Start by closing the senior centers and Rec programs.
      In all seriousness, what would be looking to cut? Assuming law enforcement (tried that, didn’t work) and child protective services are off the table. What concrete agencies do you see as overstaffed? And can you provide proof? Or are you going to see if there are backups in areas where folks furloughed and if so go back to full time, if not part time going forward? Can’t vote to close motor vehicle offices and the. Bitch that the line too long. Lol.
      Everyone was so quick to vote in the tax cap but when juniors middle school sport program was cut—suddenly it was oK to reinstate the programs and raise the budget to pay for equipment and coaches. Lol. Cause ya know, he’s gonna be the starting QB at Bergen Catholic. Really? He’s gonna beat out 200 kids for the spot?

      Reply

      • Posted by Tough Love on April 21, 2020 at 12:54 am

        How about a smaller staff just working harder …. and less BSing at the water cooler.?

        Reply

        • Posted by E on April 21, 2020 at 8:55 am

          Maybe? But like I said, Burger King will lay off some cashiers perhaps if he wait for a burger is 30 more seconds. If it’s a Minute or two? Probably not. I truly DO NOT think the problem is the water cooler. I think the problem is that NJ residents are used to NOT doing things for themselves service wise and demand services from government that in other states you may only see in well heeled towns.
          A councilman knows if he can cater to a resident, he will get that person and maybe 10-15 other votes. That’s enough sometimes in these suburbs to get in there. That’s why we hear asinine requests from a council like “can we put illuminated blinking signs at our bus stops like the ones at stop signs?” Or “where do you think we put these 25 no idling signs up?” “Uh not on private property without permission, and do you want us to write a ticket to the guy sitting in his car in January when he pulls up three minutes before the train comes?”
          It seems every year there is some new kind of town event or function which is fine but…..

          Reply

      • Posted by bpaterson on April 21, 2020 at 1:28 am

        step 1-eliminate county govt. or consolidate many local into county.

        Reply

        • Posted by E on April 21, 2020 at 9:00 am

          Good idea but not the economic disparity of places even such as bergen would be a roadblock.
          Towns like Apline, Saddle River and many in there neck of woods would see services drop a lot for almost the same money. When a storm hit and trees fell. Saddle river would not be first on the list in terms of opening roads. With there own dpw it is.
          Take a look at how many Camden County towns have joined the Camden County Police Dept.
          none have in the 7 or so years the have been in existence. Why? Tell us MJ and Marine1, that’s your neck of the woods. Although we all already know the answer now don’t me.

          Reply

      • Posted by A on April 21, 2020 at 1:32 am

        ” Workers across the country are spending far too much time doing nothing—and it’s costing their companies $100 billion annually.

        https://hbswk.hbs.edu/item/american-idle-employees-are-wasting-way-too-much-time

        Reply

  8. Same thing in California with three day/month furloughs.

    “See, we don’t need those guys.” Except scheduled maintenance was postponed, more emergency work was done on OT, contract workers were hired to fill in, (yes, contract workers filled in for furloughed state workers.)
    And Arnold Governor Schwarzenegger actually increased the total number of state workers. By thousands.
    Until he got caught by the press.

    Reply

    • Posted by Tough Love on April 21, 2020 at 12:56 am

      How’s CA doing ………. read the papers lately ?

      COVID-19 was only the icing on an already dead cake (just like NJ).

      Reply

      • Posted by E on April 21, 2020 at 9:01 am

        Good idea but not the economic disparity of places even such as bergen would be a roadblock.
        Towns like Apline, Saddle River and many in there neck of woods would see services drop a lot for almost the same money. When a storm hit and trees fell. Saddle river would not be first on the list in terms of opening roads. With there own dpw it is.
        Take a look at how many Camden County towns have joined the Camden County Police Dept.
        none have in the 7 or so years the have been in existence. Why? Tell us MJ and Marine1, that’s your neck of the woods. Although we all already know the answer now don’t me.

        Reply

    • Posted by A on April 21, 2020 at 7:38 am

      ” The state of California had about 233,000 employees in December 2019 and about 31,000 job openings, according to payroll records. Newsom’s budget called for adding hundreds more new positions.

      During the Great Recession, the state eliminated many open positions to save money, and departments didn’t replace some people who retired. California has boosted its hiring efforts in recent years, but struggled to fill openings when the private sector was humming.”

      https://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/the-state-worker/article242075821.html

      ” Now, stable state jobs likely are looking more desirable for job-seekers. But depending on cost-saving measures, departments could delay hiring or leave jobs unfilled.”
      —————
      And so it goes. Most state workers are not “career” employees. They move in or out as economic conditions change, or their own career progresses.
      It’s why a wise man once said…

      “We have met the enemy and he is us.”

      Reply

  9. Schwarzenegger spokesman Aaron McLear attributed the increase in workers over the past year to increased demands on the state for services during the recession and other factors beyond the governor’s control.

    “We’re proud of where we are with hiring,” he said.

    https://www.dailybreeze.com/2009/08/10/despite-budget-cuts-number-of-state-workers-is-up/

    Reply

  10. Posted by MJ on April 21, 2020 at 7:08 am

    Sweeney’s plan is to furlough a large percentage of the workers so that they can keep their health benefits and pension. According to Sweeney, many will make more on unemployment (counting the 600.00) than while working. I wonder if they will still have to pay into their health benefits and pensions? My guess, is that this is the beginning and many will be permanently laid off, bought out or let go because come the budget their won’t be any money left. I doubt the Feds will bail out the states to keep employees who are not needed.

    Unfortunately, it most likely will be decided on a seniority basis. Hopefully, the harder working, reliable employees will be kept and the dead weight will be let go.

    Sweeney claims it will safe hundred of millions of dollars 🙂 🙂 and I wonder exactly what they will do with that money assuming it materializes

    Reply

  11. Posted by MJ on April 21, 2020 at 7:10 am

    One more thought, I think Sweeney’s plan is to now force smaller school districts into consolidation, more shared municipal services, more shared county services, more streamlined services. It doesn’t seem as though there will be much choice but who knows

    Reply

    • Posted by E on April 21, 2020 at 9:14 am

      Many small school districts in northern Bergen are already regional. Pascack Hills, River Dell, Northern Highland, Pascack Valley and on and on. NO WAY are these towns ever going to vote for a county wide model where they share the same school district as Hackensack and Fairview, Ridgefield and such. Ain’t gonna happen. Non starter. And the county power is in these areas. Remember the attorneys we talked about? Lol. That’s why the idea is to use these services and pay for them while you are working and the decide whether NJ is where you want to retire. No hard feelings. It is what it is. I mean cmon…..I bet you would be hard pressed to find ANY student in the senior class who was in the top three quarters of the class who DIDN’T know that corona is spread by asymptomatic people. And the fucking governor of Georgia didn’t know it. Cmon Guys, let’s be honest here. Trying not sound like a conceited guy—-but on average we are WAY smarter than the average schmo in GA WV AR MS AL and so on. Wonder why?

      Reply

  12. Posted by geo8rge on April 21, 2020 at 7:43 am

    100K N.J. public workers could be partially furloughed under plan proposed by state Senate

    Some state and local employees’ work hours and wages would be reduced to 40% — essentially, working two days out of five — while unemployment insurance and the federal $600 add-on would make up for the other 60% of lost wages, according to Sweeney. The $600 add-on expires the end of July. In some cases, employees could make more than their regular salary, Sweeney said.

    An employee making $30,000 would actually collect an extra $5,100 over three months while furloughed, while an employee making $50,000 would come out $3,300 ahead and someone with $70,000 in income would make an extra $1,008, according to Sweeney.

    A worker earning $76,500 would break even, according to Sweeney’s office, which said the proposal would not affect employees’ pension or health benefits.

    https://www.nj.com/coronavirus/2020/04/100k-nj-public-workers-could-be-partially-furloughed-under-plan-proposed-by-state-senate.html

    Reply

  13. Posted by MJ on April 21, 2020 at 9:48 am

    E…..not sure what you were going on about but I do agree with you in regard to the High School and College seniors who are getting screwed big time due to no fault of their own. I especially feel for the college graduates as their employment options may be minimal at least for awhile. Sucks all around for so many and for so many different reasons.

    According to Sweeney’s plan, why bother going to work at all if one is at the 70K range when they can stay home and make more money while still retaining full health benefits.
    Other than shifting the cost around I don’t see where there are going to be much in savings but I guess one good scheme deserves another.

    I guess we will have to wait and see what happens come July and budget time. I’ll wait to see how TL weighs in on how this will save hundreds of millions of dollars 🙂 🙂

    Reply

    • The feds would be paying for it.

      Reply

    • Posted by Tough Love on April 21, 2020 at 11:05 am

      OK, you asked ………

      Seems like a scheme that the Feds shouldn’t be happy with, and perhaps not allow.

      Beyond that, I don’t have much problem with it AS LONG AS once the Fed $600 stops at the end of July, we take a GOOD HARD LOOK at how well we did with only 40% of the workforce, and ONLY hire back FULL-TIME very slowly, and ONLY where the need is VERY clear.

      My guess is that we might be able to permanently do without half of the 60% initially put on part time status. Taxpayers should not be forced to pay for more staff than necessary and consistent with the services that the majority are willing to pay for.

      The sad part is that with the crazy Union/Civil Service rules, we may not be able to PICK the best and most productive to bring back. Why not, that’s what Private Sector employers would do.

      Reply

  14. You very well may be able to make do with half of those put on furlough. Thing is they will be the non essential fluff employees that are nice to have but that we do not need. ALL of these positions particularly at the local level are added usually with the consent of taxpayers. I.e $35,000 part time position to run the senior citizen program in town. $40,000 to handle the Rec department. $10,000 to manage the pool.
    Feel good positions that are not needed, but may be wanted by a sizeable minority of the population (and an almost majority of those that vote). The PD in my town has been at the same number of officers since 2001 (when a large mall went in) and has increased by one guy since 1995. Dpw isn’t that big. Volunteer FD. Schools kill us as is in most spots around here.
    I can’t comment on the state level. I don’t work for them. Although we did get rid of our poet laureate a few years back. Lol. And replaced it with a Lt Gov position. 🙄
    Shiela Oliver has done about as much as Guadagno did. Useless position.

    Reply

  15. […] will be to shift money within the system. This won’t be necessary (or noticed) with the JRS plan in a couple of years as the state should be able to scrape up that $50 million pay-go amount but where else will the $5 […]

    Reply

  16. […] Judicial Retirement System (JRS) is projected to be the first of New Jersey’s public pension plans to run out of money on paper. Yet, we […]

    Reply

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