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NEW JERSEY TAXPAYERS’ ASSOCIATION PENSION FORUM 11-1-12. 10 THINGS PUBLIC PLAN ACTUARIES WON’T TELL YOU. 1 There are No Funding Rules. ERISA (Employee Retirement Income Security Act) of 1974 exempted government plans from funding requirements. GASB: suggestions . 2 You can’t trust them.

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new jersey taxpayers association pension forum 11 1 12

NEW JERSEY TAXPAYERS’ ASSOCIATIONPENSION FORUM 11-1-12

10 THINGS

PUBLIC PLAN ACTUARIES

WON’T TELL YOU

1 there are no funding rules
1 There are No Funding Rules

ERISA (Employee Retirement Income Security Act) of 1974 exempted government plans from funding requirements.

GASB: suggestions

NJTA Pension Forum 11-1-2012

2 you can t trust them
2 You can’t trust them
  • Private Sector: ERISA ‘74 to PPA ‘06
  • Pressure to keep contributions low from all:

Taxpayers

Politicians

Public Workers

NJTA Pension Forum 11-1-2012

3 politicians tell them their job
3 Politicians Tell Them Their Job

7.95% funding interest rate; ARC Phase-in

The Treasurer, upon recommendation from the Directors of the Division of Pensions and Benefits and the Division of Investments, has approved a change in the economic assumptions used for the valuation. The rate of investment return has been revised from 8.25% per annum to 7.95% per annum and the assumed salary increases have been reduced by 2.00% per annum for fiscal year ending 2012 through fiscal year ending 2016 and reduced by 0.75% per annum for fiscal years ending 2017 and thereafter. These assumptions will remain in effect until such time as the Treasurer approves revised economic assumptions.

The valuation reflects the final provisions of the Appropriation Act for fiscal year 2011. The fiscal year 2011 recommended State pension contribution of $754,168,635 has been reduced to $0. The valuation also reflects the effect of Chapter 1, P.L. 2010 for fiscal year 2012. The fiscal year 2012 recommended State pension contribution of $874,346,428 has been reduced to $124,906,634. This amount may be subject to change per the requirements of the State’s fiscal year 2012 spending plan. Lastly, the valuation reflects the provisions of Chapter 1, P.L. 2010 which allows the State Treasurer to reduce the recommended State pension contribution for the 2013 fiscal year to no less than 2/7th of the recommended contribution.

Buck Consultants July 1, 2011 PERS Report

NJTA Pension Forum 11-1-2012

4 defined benefit pensions in the public sector are expensive
4 Defined Benefit Pensions in the Public Sector are Expensive
  • COLAs
  • Early Retirements
  • Population with lifetime health benefits

NJTA Pension Forum 11-1-2012

5 public valuations are easy to do
5 Public Valuations Are Easy To Do
  • No IRS/PBGC/GASB
  • Computers
  • Government Entity does much of the grunt work

NJTA Pension Forum 11-1-2012

6 benefit values always understated
6 Benefit Values Always Understated

Gaming the System

Salary Spiking

Buying Service Credits

Underfunded Plans assume interest on money that is not there.

NJTA Pension Forum 11-1-2012

7 private sector gimmicks
7 Private Sector Gimmicks

Should have no application to Public Plans:

  • Asset Smoothing
  • 30-Year Amortization of Unfunded
  • Dodgy Funding Methods (PUC)

NJTA Pension Forum 11-1-2012

8 unions can t won t help
8 Unions Can’t/Won’t Help

Demanding (Suing for) Full Funding Impractical

  • Benefits wouldn’t be as high
  • Courts packed by/with politicians

NJTA Pension Forum 11-1-2012

9 drop dead date more relevant
9 Drop-Dead Date More Relevant

As of June 30, 2011, the ratio of market value of assets to the prior year’s benefit payment is 8.1. This is a simplistic measure of the number of years that the assets can cover benefit payments, excluding future State and member contributions, and investment income. This ratio increased by 1.3% from the previous year’s ratio of 8.0. If ASF assets are excluded, since they represent accumulated contributions from active and inactive members, the ratio is 4.2.

Buck Consultants July 1, 2011 PERS Valuation (page 32 of 134)

NJTA Pension Forum 11-1-2012

10 most actuaries would love to be independent
10 Most Actuaries Would Love to be Independent

Though they can’t say so because it would admit that they are not now and crack the illusion of objectivity.

With the computer programs we have today it would be simple to come up with multiple valuations using varying options that stakeholders could decide as to their reasonableness. Deteriorating funded ratios are a direct result of bad assumptions.

New Jersey: 30%

NJTA Pension Forum 11-1-2012

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