Monday, February 18, 2013

NYS NYC Pension


NYT Exposes the City's Pension Shortfall 

City’s System for Pensions Shows Strain(NYT)
An examination of problems with New York City’s system reveals an investment strategy that has failed to keep up with costs, and a governing structure that permits politics to intrude.* City not getting predicted revenue from ballpark suites(NYDN)


NY's Pension Time Bomb Ignored

EDITORIAL: Progressives vs. pensions (NYP)Progressives style themselves as people who look to the future. After all, that’s the whole idea behind the word “progress.”But progressive dreams are smacking up against a hard reality: public-sector unions.At some point in the movement, progressives made these public workers their priority — over the public whom they are supposed to serve. That choice is now coming back to haunt them, because the unsustainable promises made to these government workers are increasingly robbing politicians of the money they need to finance their progressive ambitions. The New York Times likens the situation to a bathtub draining faster than the faucet is filling it. In one sentence, it sums up de Blasio’s problem: “Instead of getting smaller, the city’s pension hole just keeps getting bigger, forcing progressively more significant cutbacks in municipal programs and services every year.” That last line is the kicker: forcing progressively more significant cutbacks in municipal programs and services every year. Recently, city Comptroller Scott Stringer happily announced that the investment strategy for the city’s pension funds had managed to pull off a 17.4 percent increase this year. That’s terrific news. But one reason we have arrived at this dismal place is because those running these funds time and again have assumed high rates of return would remain constant. Truth is, they won’t. * EJ McMahon takes a closer look at NYC’s troubled pension funds.

A federal bankruptcy court’s decision in Detroit last week putting that city’s constitutionally protected public pension on the table for cuts cracks the door open for pension reductions in New York.

Retire the secrecy(NYDN)

Taxpayer-funded benefits must be public

If You Do Not Want to Find Corruption Use Old Technology
State Controller Thomas DiNapoli slammed by auditor for using old computer technology to manage pensions(MYDN)

Pension Investigation

Financial Services Superintendent Ben Lawsky has subpoenaed about 20 companies that help New York’s pension trustees decide how to invest the billions of dollars under their control to determine whether any outside advice is clouded by undisclosed financial incentives or other conflicts of interest.
The state Department of Financial Services set up a hotline for whistleblowers with information about possible misconduct in the state’s public pension system, Gannett Albany reports:

2013 LEGISLATIVE PREVIEW: Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the Legislature could be in for a busy year, dealing with a minimum wage hike, hydrofracking, a Women’s Rights Act and more. City & State previews these big issues, from health care and education to construction and casinos

Pension Smoothing 
S&P on Cuomo's pension smoothing: “25 years is a long time from now, and the current people will not be in office.”Dick Ravitch on pension plan: “It’s borrowing, and you’re not supposed to borrow to meet an operating deficit.” *Silver Will Side With DiNapoli On Pension Smoothing(YNN) * Cuomo Separates Miner’s Political And Governmental Roles(YNN) * Governing Magazine’s Jonathan Walters calls Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s pension smoothing proposal “puzzling, to be most generous about it.” * State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli remains undecided about the plan.

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