PSEA Complicit in Pension Debacle

FEBRUARY 10, 2010 | by NATHAN BENEFIELD

The PSEA has a ridiculous new video calling on members to demand state lawmakers "keep their promise" on pension plans - essentially saying "don't reform the system at all," despite a multi-billion dollar increase in taxpayer contributions looming.

Despite the rhetoric of "keeping the promise," there isn't a "fair share" for taxpayers - they have to pay whatever is left over, which is why contributions are expected to rise from about 5% this year of payroll to over 30%. What is promised in defined-benefit plans, as the name indicates, is the benefit.

Moreover, there isn't a proposal on the table that would change benefits for current school employees, only to create a new defined contribution (DC) system for new hires. Note that in a DC plan, there is a "fair share" contribution for employers (taxpayers), such as a match of 6%, which could not be deferred to later.

Nor does the PSEA mention that they lobbied for and received a $10 billion pension benefit increase and COLA in 2001 and 2002. Or that they agreed to Act 40 of 2003, which deferred payments.

In fact, for years, the PSEA denied there was a looming crisis in pensions. (Here a PDF from the PSEA site of a fact sheet that produced, circa 2007, as they removed the original link after I posted this:  PSEA on PSERS)



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