NJ Police and Firefighters Want Back Pay to Pension Fund

October 6, 2005 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - Unions for police and firefighters in the state of New Jersey are suing for at least two years worth of back payments to their retirement fund.

Gannett New Jersey reports that the fund has a $3.5 billion shortfall, due in part to investment losses and missed contributions.

According to Gannett, the state’s Teachers Pension and Annuity Fund (TPAF) filed a similar suit last year seeking nearly $1 billion in payments skipped by the state.   The TPAF and Public Employees Retirement System reported a combined $8.5 billion shortfall earlier this year (See  Two Garden State Funds Facing $8.5B Funding Shortfall ).

The state has made virtually no payments to the pension funds since 1997, Gannett said.   At that time, the funds were doing well.   Since then a downturn in the stock market and increased retirement benefits helped create the shortfall.

The state’s Treasurer’s office had no comment on the suit.