The controversial “Public Employee Pension Reform Act” – which would “reform the excessive pension benefits provided to current government employees” – would save billions over the long haul and give local governments more room to maneuver in tight fiscal times, according to an analysis by the Legislative Analyst.

But government cannot taketh away, unless government also giveth, the LAO says.

“California courts have ruled that allowable modifications to pension systems for current and past employees, when they result in a ‘disadvantage to employees,’ generally must be accompanied by ‘comparable new advantages,’” says the analysis. “For example, a reduction of one part of the benefit must be accompanied by some other ‘advantage’ to the employee or retiree.”

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