Pennsylvania Pension Managers Note Looming Crisis

The Post-Gazette features an article on the upcoming cost increases to Pennsylvania school districts and the state for pensions in the Public School Employees Retirement System (PSERS). The article notes the dramatic cost in pensions in the coming years, some of the causes of the crisis, and quotes PSERS representatives noting there is no easy fix for the pension crisis.

The Commonwealth Foundation recently put out an estimate of the increased costs for taxpayers from the state pension systems. Rick Dreyfuss’s presentation on state pensions also provide a good overview of the causes and our proposed reforms (though, like PSERS presentation, we note none of the proposals is a silver bullet to eliminate the immediate cost pressures for taxpayers).

In related news, the fund for Pennsylvania state employees, SERS, reported quarterly earnings, and is up 4.5% for the year to date, as the Patriot News highlights. However, it should be noted that the pension plan assumes 8% annual return on investment, and SERS will need a good final quarter to match that for the year. Anything less requires additional costs to taxpayers (and anything above 8% reduces the unfunded liability).