Thursday, November 4, 2010

Threat Level Reduced on Pensions

The victory of Jerry Brown in the gubernatorial race likely means that the threat of a defined contribution plan as the new lower-tier pension is off the table. Meg Whitman supported defined contribution. Still, as the story below notes, there were a number of pension initiatives at the local level on the ballot and most passed. (San Francisco was an exception.) So the possibility that someone might put a pension proposition on the state ballot remains.

Pension reforms sweep, except San Francisco (excerpt)

November 4, 2010 by Ed Mendel,

Voters approved seven ballot measures Tuesday aimed at curbing or reducing local public pension costs. Only the rejection of a measure in labor-friendly San Francisco averted a clean sweep. Public employee unions opposed the measures, often supported by business groups. Officials who voted to put the measures on the ballot, or led the campaigns, risked the wrath of powerful unions in their own future election campaigns…

In what may be a first, Bakersfield voters bypassed collective bargaining and approved a lower pension formula for new city hires. Vice Mayor Zack Scrivner led the drive for Measure D after several years of impasse with police and firefighter unions…

Last week, the Los Angeles City Council voted 13-to-0 to put a measure on the ballot March 8 that would give new police and firefighters lower pensions. A business group said the cut would not produce enough savings…

The candidate Brown defeated, Meg Whitman, proposed switching all state workers except police and firefighters to 401(k)-style individual invest plans. She said she would take the issue to voters if necessary.

Full article at

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