A taxpayer advocate says California is feeling the heat from
Wisconsin to reform pensions, but changes signed by the state's
governor are not sufficient.
Governor Jerry Brown signed into law a bill that increases the
retirement age for new employees, increases employee contributions
and reduces benefits for future employees. The changes that take
affect next year will eventually require all state workers to pay
half of their pension costs. Brown thanked lawmakers on both sides
for reaching a deal, although Republicans say much more needs to be
done to reform the system.
Lew Uhler is the founder and president of the National
Tax-Limitation Committee. He says the changes accomplish too
"It's clear that Governor Brown is feeling the heat from the
roasting that occurred in Wisconsin earlier this year," he
observes. "Pension change of the kind that he's signed is
inadequate. The San Diego and San Jose initiatives for pension for
public employees passed earlier this year do the right thing--they
address pensions in the future for current employees, as well as
for new employees."
The changes cut the yearly payout at a little over $130,000 and
reduce pension abuses. Although Uhler asserts the changes are good,
he says it's time to stop pension recipients from getting a
percentage of their last year of service pay and to stop the