New Report Highlights Lessons for Negotiating Public Pension Plan Reforms

 September 14, 2011 ( – A new report from the Center for State and Local Government Excellence offers lessons from governments that have reformed their pension plans to make them more fiscally sustainable while still providing retirement security to their employees. 

“Strengthening State and Local Government Finances: Lessons for Negotiating Public Pension Plan Reforms” covers the reforms of five governments (three states, one county, and one city): Iowa, Oregon, Vermont, Gwinnett County, Georgia, and Houston, Texas. It offers lessons for other reform-minded governments on plan funding, the importance of using good data from experts, communication, governance, and financial education.

The report’s key findings include:

•  Pensions should be viewed as part of a broader human resources strategy that can affect recruitment and retention.

•  Policy makers need high-quality data and analyses as they consider benefit changes.

•  Strong communication with all stakeholders helps employees, elected officials, and the public understand the need for change.

•  Discipline in funding a plan’s annual required contribution is important to achieve full funding.

•  Workplace financial education will help public employees learn how to build their retirement savings.

Read the full report online.