Monday, April 28, 2014

Pension Gold


The very generous pension plans enjoyed by so-called public service employees are bringing municipalities and even states to the verge of bankruptcy all over the country. The State of Connecticut has recently provided an extreme example of the generosity of these pensions.

The Democrat Governor, Dannell Malloy, has just nominated two lawyers to serve as judges at a salary of $154000. However, both men are 66 years of age and will be eligible to retire in four years and receive a full pension of 66% of their pay for the rest of their lives. In other words, their pensions for serving just four years on the bench will be about $100000 per year, or over $8300 per month.

If we do a little math, we will find that it takes about $2.5 million earning 4% interest to provide income of $100000 per year. No wonder public service workers don’t want to give up their defined benefit plans. No wonder they vehemently oppose any effort to replace them with 401k type plans.

If the judges were to contribute 7% of their pay each year to a 401k type plan, they would put away about $10780 each year for the next four years. By the time they retired, their retirement contribution, including 4% interest, would amount to about $47600, a fraction of the $2,500,000 that the State’s defined benefit plan would be worth.  

Who is going to make up the difference for these lucky lawyers? Of course, it will be the taxpayers none of whom enjoys a pension anywhere near as generous as the State’s judges enjoy. Who has created a system that would allow a judge to retire on $100000 per year after only four years of service?

Why, for example, would the Bridgeport legislative delegation vote almost unanimously to approve these appointments? Do they really think judicial pensions like these are in the best interests of their constituents? Could it be that they are just waiting for the opportunity to just jump on the gravy train themselves?

It is time for the people of Connecticut to give a big thumbs down to this system of welfare for the well-to-do,

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