Keyword: pensions

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  • Chicago Pension Fiasco: $54 Million Lost on Deal With Daley Nephew and Ex-Obama Boss

    09/16/2018 12:55:23 PM PDT · by PBRCat · 43 replies
    The Chicago Sun-Times ^ | September 16, 2018 | Tim Novak
    A dozen years ago, five financially strapped city of Chicago pension funds invested $68 million in a shaky real estate deal put together by a former boss of President Barack Obama and a nephew of Mayor Richard M. Daley. It was a high-risk investment. Allison S. Davis ó a longtime Daley ally who once headed a small Chicago law firm that gave Obama his first job out of Harvard Law School ó and Daley nephew Robert G. Vanecko even warned in the prospectus that the pension funds could lose their entire investments. But, with Daley in office and three top...
  • Will the next mayor get Chicago its cut of a booming economy? (Rahm was the greatest!)

    09/09/2018 9:22:46 AM PDT · by Libloather · 17 replies
    Chicago Tribune ^ | 9/09/18 | Editorial Board
    **SNIP** What keeps the city afloat, and allows it to maintain a robust jobs-based economy, is the ability to borrow money and deliver services. Only cities that manage their finances responsibly can hope to woo the bond market, and thatís what Emanuel has done. In municipal bond circles, heís seen as a trusted partner whose departure is unsettling. ďIíve been pretty impressed with the mayor,Ē Howard Cure of Evercore Wealth Management told The Bond Buyer, an industry publication. ďHe inherited a very structurally weak budget and I think heís made a lot of improvements and is striving to achieve structural...
  • Pension Tick-Tock: State systemsí liabilities continue to increase, even in a booming economy.

    08/16/2018 8:44:24 AM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 17 replies
    City Journal ^ | 08/16/2018 | Steve Malanga
    When financial markets cratered in late 2007, state pension officials assured lawmakers and the public that the damage to government retirement funds was only temporary. Pension funds are long-term investors, their story went, and pension systems would recover as soon as the market did. When lawmakers in Montana, for instance, asked the state treasurer whether they should be worried about the governmentís ability to meet its retirement obligations, he confidently advised them to ďgo fishingĒ instead. They should have ignored him and taken action to bolster the stateís pension system, which has never recovered from the market crash. Montanaís retirement...
  • Xcel ratepayers would get a bum deal under Colorado Energy Plan

    08/04/2018 11:47:24 AM PDT · by george76 · 13 replies
    Colorado Politics ^ | August 2, 2018 | Amy Oliver Cooke
    Late last summer, and with great fanfare, Xcel Energy announced its proposal to close the Comanche I & II power units in Pueblo a decade ahead of schedule. They offered as replacement the euphemistically titled ďColorado Energy PlanĒ , a massive $2.5 billion fuel-switching scheme to move its Colorado customers away from baseload, reliable hydrocarbons in favor of intermittent renewables. ... the Minneapolis-based monopoly utility will force captive ratepayers to cough up at least another $287 million. Thatís on top of the modeling errors we already found in their accounting, and Xcel acknowledged. In other words, ratepayers will pay higher...
  • Taxpayers in these BLUE states are about to be destroyed thanks to massive debt

    07/29/2018 11:08:09 AM PDT · by SleeperCatcher · 40 replies
    The National Sentinel ^ | 7/29/18 | USA Features
    Other Peopleís Money: The Left-wing establishment press has found a new Democratic darling ó avowed socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, whose running for Congress in New York City ó but to be honest, the party has been trending that way for years. The evidence can be found in the way blue states have been run ó into the ground, financially speaking. Several of them are facing massive debt thanks to mostly over-promised pensions approved by Democrats that have drained state bank accounts and are set to saddle taxpayers living in them with hundreds of billions of dollars in new taxes.
  • The $36 billion multiemployer pension time bomb is almost ready to go off

    07/25/2018 6:59:45 PM PDT · by E. Pluribus Unum · 16 replies
    Daily Torch ^ | 07.25.2018 | Robert Romano
    114 out of the nationís 1,400 multiemployer pension plans covering 1.3 million workers are underfunded to the tune of $36.4 billion, with plans expected to start going insolvent in the next 5 years or so, an Aug. 2017 analysis by Cheiron has found. This is the end result of unsustainable collective bargaining arrangements between unions and employer, creating defined benefit pension plans that promise retirements far in excess of what could be justified by monthly contributions and market returns. If these had been investment products, surely the Securities and Exchange Commission might have investigated for fraud. But because they were...
  • Itís Time to Rethink Americaís Failing Highways

    06/18/2018 8:13:18 AM PDT · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 80 replies
    National Review ^ | June 12, 2018 | Robert Poole
    Here are two recent events you might have missed: In March, House speaker Paul Ryan was widely quoted as saying, ďThe last thing we want to do is pass historic tax relief and then undo that, so we are not going to raise gas taxes.ĒThe next month, in California, Republicans submitted 54 percent more than the required signatures to put on the November ballot a measure that would repeal the 2017 state law increasing gasoline and diesel taxes. Meanwhile, roads in Los Angeles are in such bad shape that it costs the average driver $892 a year in additional vehicle...
  • Broward Teachers Union pressuring state officials to end gun manufacturer contributions (Florida)

    06/15/2018 3:10:08 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 13 replies
    WSVN-TV ^ | June 15, 2018 | Joel Franco
    TAMARAC. FLA. (WSVN) - - The Broward Teachers Union, state representatives and Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School parents and students held a joint press conference, Thursday afternoon. The union called for Florida Gov. Rick Scott to force the state pension board to stop investing teacher retirement fund contributions in three firearm manufacturing companies. ďYou have turned our teachers retirement fund into blood money,Ē said Meiling Hoshing, Marjory Stoneman Douglas student. ďNo teacher wants your unhealthy decisions on their soul.Ē One of the firearm companies receiving a bulk of the funds manufactures the AR-15 rifle, the weapon used in the Marjory...
  • Connecticut labeled ďuntruthfulĒ for hiding $10 billion in retiree healthcare costs

    05/20/2018 10:03:30 PM PDT · by george76 · 16 replies
    Yankee Institute for Public Policy. ^ | May 18, 2018 | Marc E. Fitch
    Connecticutís official balance sheets will be noticeably worse next year due to changes in how the state reports its retiree healthcare liabilities... Truth in Accounting issued Connecticut a failing grade based on its 2017 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report and said the state is ďhidingĒ $10.4 billion in retiree healthcare debt. ďConnecticutís financial condition is not only concerning, but also misleading as government officials failed to disclose significant amounts of retirement debt on the stateís balance sheet,Ē the report says. ďAs a result, residents and taxpayers have been presented with an inaccurate and untruthful accounting of the state governmentís finances.Ē According...
  • Jack up property taxes for pensions, say three Chicago Fed economists

    05/15/2018 2:03:25 PM PDT · by InvisibleChurch · 128 replies
    Chicago business ^ | May 14, 2018
    Illinois homeowners, who already pay some of the nation's highest property taxes, should pay about 40 percent more for the next three decades to wipe out the state's crippling pension debt, according to a trio of economists at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. The economists argue that paying off the state's $129.1 billion in unfunded pension obligations cannot be done with revenue from new taxes such as a tax on marijuana sales or on financial transactions. Would you pay 40 percent more in property taxes if it would wipe out the state's crippling pension debt? Yes No See results...
  • Worst Idea in Illinois: Statewide Property Tax (to pay for unfunded pensions)

    05/14/2018 11:28:59 AM PDT · by doug from upland · 51 replies ^ | 5-2018 | Mike Glennon
    An audible gasp went out in the breakout room I was in at last monthís pension eventcosponsored by The Civic Federation and the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. That was when a speaker from the Chicago Fed proposed levying, across the state and in addition to current property taxes, a special property assessment they estimate would be about 1% of actual property value each year for 30 years. Evidently, that wasnít reality shock enough. This week the Chicago Fed published that proposal formally. Itís linked linked here. It surely ranks among the most blatantly inhumane and foolish ideas weíve seen...
  • Chicago Fed Thinks It Knows How To Tax Illinoisans Fleeing Pension Liabilities

    05/13/2018 7:13:14 AM PDT · by blam · 57 replies
    Wire Points ^ | 5-13-2018 | Mark Glennon
    An audible gasp went out in the breakout room I was in at last monthís pension event cosponsored by The Civic Federation and the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. That was when a speaker from the Chicago Fed proposed levying, across the state and in addition to current property taxes, a special property assessment they estimate would be about 1% of actual property value each year for 30 years. Evidently, that wasnít reality-shock enough. This week the Chicago Fed published that proposal formally. Itís linked here. It surely ranks among the most blatantly inhumane and foolish ideas weíve seen yet....
  • The Pension Crisis Is Worse Than You Think

    04/26/2018 10:28:28 AM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 23 replies
    Real Investment Advise ^ | 04/26/2018 | Lance Roberts
    Last year I penned an article discussing the ‚ÄúUnavoidable Pension Crisis.‚ÄĚ ‚ÄúCurrently, many pension funds, like the one in Houston, are scrambling to slightly lower return rates, issue debt, raise taxes or increase contribution limits to fill some of the gaping holes of underfunded liabilities in their plans. The hope is such measures combined with an ongoing bull market, and increased participant contributions, will heal the plans in the future.This is not likely to be the case.This problem is not something born of the last ‚Äėfinancial crisis,‚Äô but rather the culmination of 20-plus years of financial mismanagement.An April 2016 Moody¬ís...
  • Editorial: Chicago's pension precipice: It's worse than you thought.

    04/04/2018 2:34:57 PM PDT · by Beave Meister · 62 replies
    Chicago Tribune ^ | 4/3/2018 | Editorial Board
    Chicago taxpayers, prepare for another kick in the teeth. In fact, it might be a good time to grow fond of the toothless grin. Another recent court decision will put taxpayers on the hook for additional city pension debts. Yes, even more than before. A circuit court judge in March struck down a 2014 state law that eased pressure on the pension fund of Chicago Park District retirees. The law had increased Park District employeesí own contributions to the fund, increased their retirement-eligible age, reduced their annual cost-of-living increases and reduced duty disability benefits. But those changes will be rolled...
  • School districts across the state close as teachers call-in after pension bill passes

    03/31/2018 10:12:29 AM PDT · by Republican Wildcat · 30 replies
    Spectrum News ^ | 3/31/2018 | Nick Storm
    One-by-one school districts across central Kentucky announced their closure the day before spring break, as Republicans in the House and Senate rammed through a mystery pension reform bill. The 291 page bill was not made public, and was inserted into a waste-sewage piece of legislation on Thursday, and then sent though the lower and upper chambers with Republicans carrying the bill. Fayette County schools was among the first to announce a closure on Thursday night, as more than a thousand teachers called in sick from work and there were not enough substitutes to cover the absences. ďAll Fayette County Public...
  • Attorney General Beshear vows to sue over pension reform bill

    03/31/2018 10:08:36 AM PDT · by Republican Wildcat · 16 replies
    Spectrum News ^ | 3/30/2018 | Michon Lindstrom
    FRANKFORT- Attorney General Andy Beshear, D-Kentucky, says he will sue if Governor Bevin signs the newly passed pension reform bill. Republican members of the General Assembly passed a surprise pension bill Thursday. Senate Bill 151 , originally a bill dealing with wastewater, served as the vehicle for a revised version of Senate Bill 1. Beshear took to Twitter to announce his intentions to sue over the rushed bill. Beshear took issue with the manner in which the majority party rushed the bill through committee. ďThey didnít allow any public comment or testimony, they refused to hear from you. They plopped...
  • General Assembly surprise: House and Senate pass pension reform bill

    03/31/2018 9:57:51 AM PDT · by Republican Wildcat · 5 replies
    Spectrum News ^ | 3/29/2018 | Don Weber
    FRANKFORT Ė The Kentucky House of Representatives and Senate passed a revised pension reform bill on Thursday night. Senate Bill 151, which served as the vehicle for a revised Senate Bill 1, passed by a 49 to 46 vote after over two hours of debate on the House floor. Eleven Republicans voted no while three Republicans didnít vote. Later in the evening, the Senate passed the legislation on a 22-15 vote with 5 Republicans, Sen. Tom Buford, R-Nicholasville, Sen. C.B. Embrey, R-Morgantown, Sen. Alice Forgy Kerr, R-Lexington, Sen. Julie Raque Adams, R-Louisville, and Sen. Brandon Smith, R-Hazard, joining ten Democrats...
  • Why Are States So Strapped for Cash? There Are Two Big Reasons

    03/29/2018 12:37:10 AM PDT · by qaz123 · 25 replies
    WSJ | 28Mar18 | Cezary Podkul & Heather Gillers
    The only speaker standing between state budget officers and the opening cocktail hour at a Washington conference was the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services. What he said left no one in a celebratory mood. Medicaid costs, said then-Secretary Michael Leavitt, were projected to grow so fast that within 10 years they would ďcrowd out virtually every other category of spending.Ē State spending on higher education, infrastructure and safety, he predicted, would all get squeezed.
  • Another time bomb for Chicago taxpayers

    03/28/2018 6:41:01 AM PDT · by simpson96 · 11 replies
    Chicago Tribune ^ | 3/27/2018 | Chicago Tribune Editorial Board
    Maybe you think the worst is over for Chicago Public Schools: Springfield sprang for millions in budget and pension relief last year. Time to lean back and sip an icy beverage. Sorry to interrupt this reverie, but there are 1 billion reasons that youíre wrong. That is, the Chicago Teachersí Pension Fund is short another $1 billion, according to the fundís consultants.(snip) Why is this happening? Because of new estimates that reduce expected investment returns over the next decades by a half-percentage point, from 7.75 percent annually to 7.25 percent. Even a relatively small tweak creates a big hole. Hence,...
  • Colorado has the Sixth Lowest State and Local Tax Burden in the Nation for FY 2016

    03/25/2018 5:38:40 AM PDT · by cutty · 20 replies
    Key Policy Data ^ | Mar 22, 2018
    In Fiscal Year (FY) 2016, Colorado collected $25.4 billion in state and local taxesóor $4,590 for every man, woman, and child. While this is an impressive sum of money, it tells us little about whether or not the average Colorado taxpayer can afford this level of taxation. ... Coloradoís state and local tax burden (tax collections divided by private sector personal income) was the sixth lowest in the nation for FY 2016 at 11.8 percentóor -17 percent below the national average of 14.3 percent. ... Coloradoís tax burden has increased over time by only 3 percent to 11.8 percent in...