Post-Gazette Editorial–End this circus: The mayor and council must fix the pension fund

Now the city faces a rare and crippling crisis. On Jan. 1 city property values will decline immediately because higher taxes will be needed to stabilize its pension fund. All of that will occur because the state, in the new year, will be able to take over the pension plan since the mayor and council are nowhere near a deal that will deliver the $200 million-plus needed to bring the plan up to 50 percent funded, from the current 29 percent.

That takeover will mean the city will be forced by the state to pay much higher contributions into the fund year after year. The state doesn’t care where the money comes from — even if it means sharply higher taxes — only that the city shore up its pension program.

City Council members keep saying that such a hit won’t come for years, but that lackadaisical attitude is part of the reason they and the mayor have failed to find a compromise.

Read it all.


Posted in * Economics, Politics, City Government, Economy, Pensions, Personal Finance, Politics in General, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--

2 comments on “Post-Gazette Editorial–End this circus: The mayor and council must fix the pension fund

  1. Dan Crawford says:

    But Pennsylvania in all its political manifestations is a circus, and tragically a self-sustaining one at that.

  2. Bruce says:

    Those of us who are employed and own property in the City of Pittsburgh are in for bad, bad news in coming years as all these bills come due. But our Mayor and Council are incapable of adult behavior. There were two legitimate ways forward on this, and multiple opportunities to go one way or the other, or to split the difference. Instead we end the year with political posturing, name-calling, blaming. What we need in Pittsburgh is a competitive two-party political system, but that’s a pipe-dream.

    Bruce Robison