CA Governor Proposes Hybrid Pension System for New Hires

October 27, 2011 ( – California Governor Jerry Brown proposed a hybrid pension system for new California state workers, reports the Associated Press. 

The proposal calls for a trimming of public employee pension benefits. It will deal mostly with new state hires, raising the retirement age from 55 to 67 for civil workers. Public safety officials who can now retire as young as 50 would have to work longer, but the calculation would be based on their ability to perform.

The article states, the governor also wants current and new hires to start paying a greater share of pension costs. By shifting to a mandatory “hybrid” system, employees with at least 30 years of service would replace about 75% of an employee’s salary through retirement funds and Social Security, according to the draft.

“It’s time to fix our pension systems so that they are fair and sustainable over a long time horizon,” Brown said in a prepared statement to the AP. “My plan raises the retirement age and bans abusive practices like “spiking” and “air time” while mandating that public employees pay an equal share of pension costs.”

The administration estimates its proposal would save about $900 million annually. Brown’s plan would require approval from the Legislature. Several parts of the plan would also require voter approval, including extending many of its provisions to employees at California’s public university systems, and Brown’s goal to add two independent, public members to the board of the California Public Employee Retirement System.