Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Good News and Bad News

California judges sue CalPERS pension system over contributions

(Reuters) - A group of judges is suing California's public pension system CalPERS and the state of California over claims their pension contributions have been almost doubled unlawfully. Under state pay grades, the six California Superior Court judges each earn more than $181,000 a year. The lawsuit filed on Dec. 23 says their pension contributions should be lowered by about $13,000 a year. The six, who were elected in 2012, claim a pension reform law signed by Governor Jerry Brown which took effect Jan. 1, 2013 has raised their pension contributions to 15 percent from 8 percent of their salary. They say the 8 percent contribution was set in stone and should not have been raised by the new law retrospectively...

Full story at

There is good news and bad news in the item above for the UC pension.  Despite news stories suggesting that court decisions will allow substantial retroactive cutbacks in public defined-benefit pensions, it is worth noting that the judges who might make those decisions are themselves covered by those very plans.  As the item suggests, they tend to take the view that a promise is an ironclad promise.  On the other hand, the "optics" (as they say) of high-paid employees complaining is never good PR.

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